DUBLIN (11/13/13)--Irish credit unions recently gained access to provide electronic payment services to their members through a license granted by the Central Bank of Ireland to the Credit Union Service Organization for Payments.
|World Council of Credit Unions representatives, from left Brian McCrory, director; Grzegorz Bierecki, chair; and Brian Branch, president/CEO, met with the Irish League of Credit Unions at its headquarters in Dublin Friday to gain a better understanding of the Irish system.|
The new service will allow credit union members nationwide to electronically transfer payments from a bank, employer or social welfare office directly into their credit union account.
"The recent exit of multiple international banks from the Irish financial services sector means that there is a greater scope for Ireland's credit unions to offer a vital link between the Irish public and accessible, community-based financial services," said World Council of Credit Unions President/CEO Brian Branch during a visit last week to the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU), a World Council member. "A payments license will allow credit unions to begin to put a realistic not-for-profit alternative in place."
Branch and World Council's board of directors met with ILCU CEO Kieron Brennan and the ILCU board of directors to learn about challenges facing the nation's credit unions and the impact of an electronic payments service on members' ability to manage their current and future finances.
|A World Council of Credit Unions delegation visited Dundrum CU in Ireland for a presentation from its executive committee. (Photo provided by World Council of Credit Unions)|
"We believe that reforming our payments system will provide cost competitiveness, greater security and convenience for 3.1 million credit union members nationwide," Brennan said.
The World Council delegation visited Dundrum CU for a presentation from its executive committee.
Since the beginning of Ireland's historical recession in 2008, ILCU and Irish credit unions have faced economic difficulties, yet have remained a coherent social and economic force, said the World Council. Membership has grown steadily, which is partially due to increased access to loans.
As of 2012, Ireland had 487 credit unions serving 3.2 million members, according to World Council's most recent statistical report. A recent study by ILCU shows that consumers' confidence in credit unions is on the rise.