Thursday 21 February 2019

Dáil committee set to quiz Draghi on tracker scandal

ECB President Mario Draghi
ECB President Mario Draghi
Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

President of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi is willing to appear before the Oireachtas Finance Committee to discuss the policies of the institution - including his view on the ECB's role in the tracker mortgage scandal here.

The ECB is responsible overall for the supervision of the banking system within the eurozone.

It is directly responsible for the prudential supervision of what are called the 'significant' banks, or the biggest banks operating in a particular country, which includes AIB and Bank of Ireland.

He is likely to be asked what role the European bank regulator has in overseeing the payment of refunds to 34,000 people who were wrongly denied trackers.


Mr Draghi told MEP Brian Hayes in the European Parliament that he would be glad to accept an invitation to the Oireachtas, if he were to receive one.

Mr Hayes said: "President Draghi's comments are very welcome and it sends a positive signal that he is willing to debate the ECB's activities with the Oireachtas Finance Committee."

The Dublin MEP said he had been working with chairman of the Committee John McGuinness in an effort to bring Mr Draghi before TDs and senators to debate issues such as quantitative easing and the state of the eurozone economy.

"Given the ECB's engagement with other national parliaments, there is now a good opportunity for the ECB to engage with the Oireachtas.

"Ireland has been a founding member of the Eurozone since the euro was first introduced in 1999 and it is in our interest to debate the future of the single currency."

Informal contact has been made between the Oireachtas Finance Committee and the ECB with a view to Mr Draghi appearing before the Committee.

The latest move comes after former ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet eventually accepted an invitation to speak to members of the Oireachtas Banking Inquiry, but not in Leinster House.

Irish Independent

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