Saturday 18 November 2017

Ulster Bank cuts to hit South worst

Ulster Bank's Ellvena Graham
Ulster Bank's Ellvena Graham
Sarah McCabe

Sarah McCabe

THE Republic will bear the brunt of planned job and branch cuts at Ulster Bank, the bank's Northern Ireland head told members of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Two-thirds of the 1,800 planned job losses and the majority of up to 60 branch closures will come from its Republic of Ireland operation, Ulster Bank's Northern Ireland and corporate banking head Ellvena Graham said.

She was speaking in front of the Northern Ireland Assembly's committee for finance and personnel in Belfast yesterday.

Ms Graham apologised for the mishandling of an investor presentation last week, where it appeared that the bank was seeking 1,800 fresh job cuts. "That was said completely out of context," she said.

As previously reported, the 1,800 cuts will be made up "natural wastage" and 950 redundancies that have already been announced.

About 350 of these redundancies concern Northern Irish employees, while 600 concern the Republic.

Ms Graham said the natural wastage will include staff on two-year contracts who are currently employed to deal with mortgage arrears and restructuring. Their contracts will not be renewed.

Natural wastage also includes the bank's normal staff attrition rate – about 5pc or 260 people annually.

All the branch closures will be complete by the end of next year.

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