Central Bank Bill published


New legislation that enhances the Central Bank's regulatory powers and provides protection for whistleblowers was published today.

The Central Bank (Supervision and Enforcement) Bill 2011 strengthens the ability of authorities to impose and supervise compliance with regulatory requirements and to undertake interventions when necessary.

The publication of the Bill is a further requirement under the EU-IMF programme of support for Ireland.

Announcing the publication of the Bill this morning, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said the legislation was a response to the regulatory failures which led to the recent financial crisis.

"The publication of the Central Bank (Supervision and Enforcement) Bill 2011 represents a significant further step in the reform of financial regulation in Ireland. The changes introduced by the Bill will underpin an assertive, risk-based model of regulation supported by a credible threat of enforcement," said Mr Noonan.

Among the provisions included in the Bill is protection from civil liability and victimisation for so-called whistleblowers and a requirement for financial service providers to provide independently prepared reports to the Central Bank for diagnostic, monitoring and compliance purposes.

The power to issue regulatory interventions is included in the new legislation as is the ability to fine or suspend financial services providers where necessary.

The Bill is expected to progress to second stage in the Dáil this autumn.