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Tuesday 19 March 2019

Donnery refuses to be drawn on Central Bank job


Sharon Donnery
Sharon Donnery

David Chance

Sharon Donnery refused to be drawn on whether she would apply for the post of governor of the Central Bank of Ireland, saying there was no formal vacancy at present.

The second-most senior official at the Central Bank is widely seen as the leading candidate to replace Governor Philip Lane when he leaves for a job at the European Central Bank.

Ms Donnery was speaking yesterday about risks to growth at the Institute of International and European Affairs, on International Women's Day.

She was the first woman appointed as a deputy governor in 2016 and made the final cut of candidates for a top financial regulation job in Europe this year only to be beaten by an Italian nominee.

The Central Bank's other deputy governor, Ed Sibley, told the Irish Independent that he will not be putting his name forward when the Government replaces Dr Lane, and is happy to continue in his current role overseeing financial regulation.

Other tipped possible candidates include Andrew McDowell, who was economic adviser to then-Taoiseach Enda Kenny and was subsequently appointed as vice-president of the board of the European Investment Bank.

From a high-profile Fine Gael-linked family, he is a descendant of nationalist scholar and revolutionary Eoin MacNeill and a relative of former justice minister Michael McDowell.

Also tipped to run is the Secretary General of the Department of Public Expenditure Robert Watt, a shortlisted candidate when the job last came up. He was under fire in the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee over the costs of the planned National Children's Hospital.

In 2017, just 11 out of the 173 central banks surveyed by the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum were headed by women. The Federal Reserve, the most powerful financial institution in the world, was led by Janet Yellen until 2014.

Irish Independent

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