IFA Farm Business Chairman, Martin Stapleton, has met with the Credit Review Office (CRO) to discuss issues of concern to farmers in relation to credit applications and refusals, sales of loan books and other barriers to competition in the banking sector.
The CRO is an independent office which provides a credit appeals process for SMEs including farmers.
At the top of the agenda was Brexit, with the IFA Chairman highlighting how access to credit in the form of working capital may become an issue in the event of a disturbance to the flow of trade with the UK, if a no deal Brexit materialises.
Martin Stapleton said: “The role of banks should be to encourage and enable farmers and SMEs to undertake investment. However, the experience on the ground can be very different from the glossy slogans that we see advertised by banks on television and radio. The most basic loan application is getting tied up in all sorts of red tape because the banks have moved away from their customers.
“We know that with the uncertainty that Brexit is causing, this is likely to become even more pronounced in the coming months”.
The IFA Farm Business Chairman added: “The CRO offers a valuable appeal process, which is open to farmers who are dissatisfied with the interaction they have had with their banks. In addition, they deal with changes to existing credit terms and conditions”.
Further information on the services of the Credit Review Office are available from the Credit Review Office website www.creditreview.ie.