Bruton says no guarantees for safety of 750 MBNA jobs
THE future of 750 jobs in the northwest remained precarious last night as Jobs Minister Richard Bruton admitted he could not guarantee the future of all the workers at the MBNA credit card company in Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim.
Workers there have been left in limbo since the shock announcement two weeks ago that the US company was to sell off its Irish and UK credit card operations, effectively closing down the business.
Mr Bruton admitted yesterday there were difficulties in selling the company off as a going concern but claimed "no stone would be left unturned".
"Of course there are legitimate fears out there," he said.
"We can't guarantee the outcome but we have to be prepared and determined in our approach," he added, speaking during a visit to Leitrim to meet management and workers.
Richard Branson's Virgin Money, which had expressed an interest, clarified it was only interested in the UK credit card business, plunging Irish workers into further uncertainty.
Staff were quietly expressing their concerns about the future, said local TD Tony McLoughlin.
"I am told that it may be the end of the year before it becomes clear what is happening," he added.
An MBNA spokesperson confirmed management was continuing "to engage in open and positive dialogue".
Meanwhile, 50 jobs are to be created at a hi-tech IT firm in Dublin. Citrix Systems is looking for engineers, managerial and customer support staff as it expands operations.
John Kelly, Citrix Systems' senior director, said: "We have immediate career opportunities at all levels for technology professionals."