DUBLIN – Ireland will introduce long-anticipated laws to make senior bankers and executives in other financial sectors directly accountable for failings at institutions over the next 12 to 18 months, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said last week.

Donohoe had planned to bring in the Senior Executive Accountability Regime in 2018 but parliamentary elections and the COVID-19 crisis slowed progress. The new laws will allow for additional fines and regulatory findings against individuals.

Calls from opposition politicians for the legislation to be progressed grew earlier this year after Ireland’s largest stockbroking firm and wealth management firm, Davy, received a record central bank fine for breaching market rules.

The new regime will apply to senior individuals in banks, insurance firms – excluding reinsurance companies – investment firms which are authorized to hold client monies or assets and third country branches of those categories.

(Reporting by Padraic Halpin; editing by Andrea Ricci)