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Former Taoiseach's comments on financial regulation gave MEP 'the shivers'

At a conference last week Bruton said there should be less regulation of the IFSC.

Former Taoiseach and president of the IFSC, John Bruton.
Former Taoiseach and president of the IFSC, John Bruton.
Image: Thierry Charlier/AP

MEP NESSA CHILDERS has criticised former Taoiseach John Bruton over comments he made last week calling for less financial regulation.

Bruton made the comments at the European Insurance Forum conference in Dublin, commenting that regulation could not be a substitute for ethics.

Today Childers hit out at the former Taoiseach and president of the IFSC and said his speech gave her “the shivers”. “It seems some people have not learned from the financial crisis which cost us all billions of euro,” she said. The MEP said that greater transparency is needed in lobbying meetings between the international finance industry and the Irish government.

“This is especially needed when discussing EU policy, with balance provided with participation from other sectors, from SMEs and the social partners,” she said.

She said groups involved in lobbying focus on the hedge fund, insurance, banking and treasury sectors with monthly meetings of each in government buildings with many international firms involved as well as accountancy companies.

“It is of course essential that there is close co-operation between the government and the IFSC is developing such an important sector, the IFSC provides thousands of jobs and much needed tax revenue,” Childers said.

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“However these meetings, the agenda and the attendees must be made transparent and published online. We know from previous experience that government policy on such critical sectors of the economy must be openly and transparently debated.”

Read: Personal Insolvency service will be available to gardaí> Read: Former politicians will face temporary ban on lobbying under new rules>

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