Irish central bank tunes in to fintech

The Central Bank of Ireland is launching an innovation hub and industry engagement programme to keep step with the evolving fintech and regulatory landscapes.

The creation of the new fintech division was announced by Derville Rowland, director general financial conduct at the central bank during a speech at Cork University.

Ireland has a thriving digital ecosystem and is viewed by many tech firms and banks as an ideal location for post-Brexit relocation and passporting, lending a sense of urgency to the Bank’s efforts.

The Bank last year commissioned an expert group to create a picture of current fintech activity in Ireland. It found that the absence of an accessible point of contact for fintech firms was viewed by the industry as an inhibitor to innovation.

“This new Central Bank unit will focus on engagement, sharing and listening, and will be a two-way street,” says Rowland. “Innovative firms will be able to contact the Central Bank at Email: with questions. This will start a conversation. It will give firms a way to engage with us outside of more formal regulatory interactions, such as in the authorisations process.”

The bank also intends to launch a dedicated section in its Website to address common questions and issues and to host a series of ‘FinTech Roundtables’ starting later in 2018.