Central Bank, ESRI, EIB jointly host “Business Finance & Investment: Recovering from the Pandemic, Preparing for Future Challenges”

21 March 2022 Press Release

Central Bank of Ireland

  • Event focused on financing and investment position of firms in Ireland, including research presentations drawn from firm survey-level data.
  • Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe TD delivered keynote address.
  • Other speakers included Central Bank Governor Gabriel Makhlouf and Deputy Governor Sharon Donnery, Vice President of the European Investment Bank Christian Kettel Thomsen, and Alan Barrett of the ESRI.

In partnership with the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) and the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Central Bank of Ireland today (21 March 2022) hosted an event, “Business Finance & Investment: Recovering from the Pandemic, Preparing for Future Challenges.”

Today’s event provided an opportunity to share insights and discussion on the financing and investment challenges facing firms in Ireland. Research presentations drawn from survey and firm-level data highlighted the current issues affecting firms, in particular those arising from two years of pandemic restrictions. These informed discussions on how policymakers might address existing issues as well as future challenges, including climate change. Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe TD delivered a keynote address at the event.

Opening the event, Governor of the Central Bank Gabriel Makhlouf highlighted the Central Bank’s mandate to provide independent economic analysis and insight, saying “Good policy cannot be set without data, research, and analysis.” He continued, “Events like this are an attempt by our institutions to provide this holistic view, which is essential to good policymaking.”

Professor Alan Barrett, Director of the ESRI, said, “As Irish firms continue to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic, they will face many challenges and barriers. Today’s conference provides a platform to discuss research and share views on the path forward.”

Christian Kettel Thomsen, European Investment Bank Vice President, said, “The European Investment Bank is committed to supporting investment by Irish businesses and backing priority investment in education, skills and services. Today’s discussions will help to strengthen the impact of future EIB engagement in Ireland, accelerate recovery from the pandemic and enhance the impact of targeted financing in the years ahead.”

In her closing remarks, Deputy Governor Sharon Donnery noted, “Investment, both public and private, is the engine of long-term economic growth. Financing conditions that facilitate sustainable levels of private investment are a prerequisite to a successful economy.” She highlighted the value of the research presented by Central Bank colleagues, the ESRI, and the EIB and said, “The great benefit of events like this is in offering a comprehensive overview of current credit and investment trends.”

Notes to Editors

The Central Bank of Ireland, ESRI, and EIB jointly hosted “Business Finance & Investment: Recovering from the Pandemic, Preparing for Future Challenges” virtually on Monday 21 March 2022. The event featured four presentations -

  • “Corporate investment in the wake of Covid-19 – perspectives from the EIB Investment Survey” – Deborah Revoltella, EIB Group;
  • “SME Investment Trends in Ireland: Covid-19 and the Barriers” – Conor O’Toole, ESRI;
  • “The Department of Finance SME Credit Demand Survey: Some Insights Ten Years On” – Leona Cantillon, Department of Finance;
  • “Credit supply and demand in the pandemic recovery” – Niall McGeever, Central Bank of Ireland.

Presentations were followed by a panel discussion, chaired by Alan Barrett of the ESRI.

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe TD - Keynote Address