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Department of Finance to beef up economics division in reorganisation

THE DEPARTMENT of Finance is to beef up its economics division as part of a reorganisation under new Secretary General John Moran.

While Mr Moran said the department has warned that staff cuts and reduced resources have hamstrung its ability to achieve goals set out by the Government, he is keen that the economics division be strengthened as part of a restructuring.

It is understood that this will include more staff as well as training of existing employees.

In its Department of Finance Statement of Strategy, a revised version of Finance’s strategy plan to 2014, a report by Mr Moran also highlights how resources will be realigned, adapted and enhanced in order for the Department to meet its objectives.

He was appointed secretary general in March replacing Kevin Cardiff who has taken up a role with the European Court of Auditors.

A solicitor by training, prior to joining Finance, he was head of wholesale banking supervision at the Central Bank and an executive with Zurich Capital Markets.

The document includes plans to make the Department “work smarter” and the maximisation of the value of the State’s investment in banks as well as a restructuring of the credit unions.

"For 2011, the Department had established goals, many of which were driven by the commitments under the EU/IMF funding programme,” Mr Moran said.

“ Very significant progress has been achieved in the furtherance of these goals.

“We believe that building on that progress, it is appropriate for 2012 to proactively revisit these goals.

“We are redirecting our own primary focus more towards the identification and implementation of measures which will contribute to enhanced confidence, delivering sustainable growth in our economy and thereby repair the damage caused to the lives of citizens, the economy and the banking sector.”