Wednesday 21 February 2018

Ex-IMF official will conduct probe into banks

EMMET OLIVER

A former International Monetary Fund (IMF) and European Commission official, German Klaus Regling, is to conduct the preliminary investigation into the origins of the banking crisis here.

Mr Regling will begin his work shortly, said the Department of Finance, and his report will identify the "key causes'' of the crisis. The governor of the Central Bank, Dr Patrick Honohan, will also be conducting a probe into the failures by regulators. Neither report will involve public hearings.

Mr Regling has worked at the EU Commission, the IMF and the German Ministry of Finance. In recent years he has managed his own Brussels-based economic and financial consultancy, KR Economics.

Mr Regling, whose report will be handed to the Commission of Inquiry into the banking crisis, will focus on the international, social and economic environment at the time the banking crisis developed. German Chancellor Angela Merkel appointed Mr Regling as a member of the Issing Commission in 2008 to advise the German government on financial regulation reform.

Regulation

"It is in the interest of this country that we get to the real causes of the financial crisis," said Finance Minister Brian Lenihan.

"It will ensure that the future regulation of our financial system and the management of our economy will secure sustainable economic growth."

From 2001 to 2008, Mr Regling was director-general for economic and financial affairs at the European Commission. Before that, he was director-general in the German Ministry of Finance where he worked for more than a decade on economic and monetary union in Europe. In his European Commission role he often met Irish finance ministers and was responsible for ensuring Ireland kept a stable budget.

Mr Regling is known to a large number of Irish civil servants from his work in Brussels.

Irish Independent

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