Murphy backs credit union growth

Date published: 19 March 2024

Economy Minister Conor Murphy has announced his intention to grow the local network of credit unions.

Irish League of Credit Unions
(L-R) David Malone, ILCU Chief Executive; Martin Busch, ILCU President; Economy Minister Conor Murphy; and Martin Fisher, Head of Northern Ireland at ILCU.

Speaking at the launch of a manifesto by the Irish League of Credit Unions in Parliament Buildings today, the Minister said he will establish a dedicated team to update legislation, invest in digital technology and incentivise lending for sustainable projects.

The Minister said:

“For more than six decades credit unions have financially supported families and small businesses through affordable finance and a deep connection with the communities they serve. 

“Their role is even more important today as a result of mainstream financial institutions – institutions that were bailed out by taxpayers during the global financial crash – continuing to withdraw their traditional services from both households and businesses. 

“The policy manifesto launched today by the Irish League of Credit Unions sets out three ways in which my Department can help it to grow. Firstly, by updating legislation, learning from developments in Britain and the south of Ireland, so that credit unions can broaden the products and services they provide to their members, in a way that is consistent with their unique ethos. Secondly, by investing in digital technology, so that credit unions can develop their online services and strengthen their cybersecurity. And thirdly, by incentivising lending for green projects, including home improvements.” 

The Minster confirmed he will set up a team to deliver the policies outlined in the manifesto and that the necessary policies and legislation will be co-designed with both the Irish League of Credit Unions and the Ulster Federation of Credit Unions. He added:

“This important work will be prioritised by my Department. It will proceed at pace and be delivered within the three years remaining of the mandate.”

Notes to editors: 

1. The Department may take photographs and videos at announcements and events to publicise its work. Photographs, interviews, videos or other recordings may be issued to media organisations for publicity purposes or used in promotional material, including in publications, newspapers, magazines, other print media, on television, radio and electronic media (including social media and the internet). Photographs and videos will also be stored on the Department’s internal records management system. The Department will keep the photographs and recordings for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which they have been obtained. The Department’s Privacy Policy is available on our website.

2. To keep up to date with news from the Department for the Economy you can follow us on the following social media channels:

X – @Economy_NI
Facebook – @DeptEconomyNI
Instagram – economy_ni
LinkedIn – Department for the Economy NI 

3. For media enquiries contact the Department for the Economy Press Office at  

4. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

Share this page

Back to top