Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Wednesday, 18 May 2022
Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach
Withdrawal from Irish Banking Market: Engagement with Ulster Bank and KBC Ireland
Ms Jane Howard:
If I could go back a step, in October of last year we started to reach out to customers who have a heavy reliance on an overdraft facility. We think there are approximately 1,000 who may have some difficulty in repaying their overdraft balance within the six months. Those are the customers to whom we have been talking to understand how can we help them. In some cases, as I said a moment ago, it is about restructuring it onto a reducing loan. It may be that customers can afford it but having the structure of a repayment actually helps people to get that debt down. That is what we are focused on at present in terms of helping our customers.
I reiterate that the vast majority of customers are good for credit. If you are good for credit, even in times where it is difficult, you can still get an overdraft facility or, if it is more appropriate for you, a loan to help you through. We are reaching out to those customers. We will support them. That is the priority right now.