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Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland Act 2003

Insertion into the Principal Act of new Parts IIIA and IIIB.

26.—The Principal Act is amended by inserting the following Parts before Part IV:

“PART IIIA

Irish Financial Services Regulatory Authority

Chapter I

Constitution, functions and powers of Regulatory Authority

Interpretation: Part IIIB and Schedule 3.

33A.—In this Part and Schedule 3—

‘Chairperson’ means Chairperson of the Regulatory Authority;

‘member’ means a member of the Regulatory Authority;

‘other members of the Regulatory Authority’—

(a) when used in a provision relating to the Chief Executive — means a majority of the members of the Regulatory Authority other than the Chief Executive or a person acting as such, and

(b) when used in a provision relating to the Consumer Director — means a majority of the members of the Regulatory Authority other than the Consumer Director or a person acting as such.

Establishment of Regulatory Authority.

33B.—(1) There is established by this section a body called ‘Údarás Rialála Seirbhísí Airgeadais na hÉireann’ or in the English language the ‘Irish Financial Services Regulatory Authority’.

(2) The Regulatory Authority is a constituent part of the Bank.

(3) The Regulatory Authority is separate from its members and continues in existence despite any vacancy or change in its membership.

Functions and powers of Regulatory Authority.

33C.—(1) The Regulatory Authority has the following functions:

(a) to perform the functions the Bank has under or in respect of the enactments and statutory instruments specified in Schedule 2;

(b) in respect of functions of the Bank under sections 18 and 23 of the Central Bank Act 1971

(i) in so far as relates to the performance of functions imposed on the Regulatory Authority by this section, to perform those functions of the Bank, and

(ii) in any other case and by agreement with the Governor, to contribute to the performance of those functions of the Bank;

(c) whenever requested to do so, to provide the Governor and the Board with advice, information and assistance with respect to the performance of their respective functions under the Central Bank Acts;

(d) to perform such other functions as are expressly imposed on it by this or under any other Act or law.

(2) (a) The Minister may, after consulting the Bank, by order notified in Iris Oifigiúil, add—

(i) to Part 1 of Schedule 2 any specified enactment, or

(ii) to Part 2 of that Schedule any specified statutory instrument,

under or in respect of which functions of the Bank are to be performed by the Regulatory Authority.

(b) An order under paragraph (a) may be limited to specified entities, or categories of entities, to which the enactments or statutory instruments apply.

(3) In performing its functions and exercising its powers, the Regulatory Authority is required to promote the best interests of users of financial services in a way that is consistent with—

(a) the orderly and proper functioning of financial markets, and

(b) the orderly and prudent supervision of providers of those services.

(4) Without limiting subsection (3), the Regulatory Authority shall take such action as it considers appropriate to increase awareness among members of the public of available financial services and the cost to consumers, risks and benefits associated with the provision of those services. None of the following is liable to pay damages arising out of a failure to comply with this subsection:

(a) the Bank;

(b) a member of the Board;

(c) an employee of the Bank;

(d) a member of the Regulatory Authority;

(e) the Registrar of Credit Unions;

(f) an agent of the Bank or of its constituent parts.

(5) So far as consistent with Part II and this Part, the Regulatory Authority has power to do whatever is necessary for or in connection with, or reasonably incidental to, the performance of its functions.

(6) The Regulatory Authority may, in relation to the functions and powers of the Bank that the Authority is to perform or may exercise, bring and defend legal proceedings, and do any other thing, in the name of the Bank. This subsection does not apply to prosecutions for offences arising under the designated enactments and designated statutory instruments or proceedings for the recovery of amounts of levies or fees prescribed under section 33J or 33K.

(7) The Regulatory Authority is required to perform its functions and exercise its powers in a way that is consistent with the Rome Treaty and the ESCB Statute.

(8) In performing its functions and exercising its powers, the Regulatory Authority has a duty to act in a way that is consistent with the performance by the Governor and the Board of their respective functions in relation to the Bank. For the purpose of verifying compliance with that duty, the Regulatory Authority shall provide the Governor or the Board with such information as the Governor or the Board reasonably require or as it considers appropriate.

(9) If any matter relating to the financial stability of the State's financial system arises in connection with the performance or exercise by the Regulatory Authority of its functions or powers, that Authority shall consult the Governor on that matter. Where the Regulatory Authority considers it prudent in the circumstances it may send a report to the Minister on any matter to which this subsection relates. The Regulatory Authority may otherwise act on that matter only with the agreement of the Governor. For the purpose of this subsection, ‘matter’ includes (but is not limited to) the issue, revocation and suspension of a licence or other authority.

(10) The Regulatory Authority can perform its functions and exercise its powers both within the State and elsewhere.

(11) If—

(a) the performance of a function or the exercise of a power by the Bank is dependent on its opinion, belief or state of mind in relation to a matter, and

(b) the function or power is, by this section, to be performed by the Regulatory Authority,

that Authority is required to perform the function or exercise the power in relation to the matter on the basis of its own opinion, belief or state of mind.

(12) Any act, matter or thing done in the name of, or on behalf of, the Bank by the Regulatory Authority in the performance or exercise of that Authority's functions or powers is taken to have been done by the Bank.

(13) The fact that the Regulatory Authority is required to perform functions, and is authorised to exercise powers, of the Bank by virtue of this section does not affect the status of the Bank as a competent authority for the purposes of any European Union directive or regulation under which the Bank is such an authority.

Regulatory Authority to comply with certain guidelines.

33D.—(1) Either the Governor or the Board may, with respect to the functions of the Governor or the Board, issue to the Regulatory Authority guidelines as to the policies and principles that that Authority is required to implement in performing functions, or exercising powers, of the Bank.

(2) The Regulatory Authority is required to comply with guidelines issued to it under this section.

(3) Guidelines issued by the Governor or the Board under this section shall be in writing and the Governor or the Board, as the case may be, shall cause them to be published in Iris Oifigiúil as soon as practicable after they are issued.

Membership of Regulatory Authority.

33E.—(1) The Regulatory Authority comprises no fewer than 8 and no more than 10 members, of whom—

(a) one is the Chief Executive, and

(b) one is the Consumer Director, and

(c) no fewer than 6 and no more than 8 are persons appointed by the Minister for Finance after consulting the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment.

(2) Instead of appointing a person under subsection (1)(c), the Minister may designate the holder of a specified office as an official member of the Regulatory Authority. Whoever is for the time being the holder of such an office is an official member of that Authority.

(3) A person is not eligible for appointment under subsection (1)(c) if the person—

(a) is a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(b) is a member of the European Parliament or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(c) is a member of a local authority or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member.

(4) Schedule 3 has effect with respect to the Regulatory Authority and its members.

Appointment of Chief Executive of the Regulatory Authority.

33F.—(1) The other members of the Regulatory Authority shall appoint a person as the Chief Executive of that Authority. Other than the appointment of the first Chief Executive (which is provided for by paragraph 4 of Schedule 3 to the Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland Act 2003), the appointment of a Chief Executive under this section shall only be made after the holding of a public open competition for that position.

(2) A person appointed as Chief Executive holds office for such period, not exceeding 5 years, as is specified in the document of appointment, unless the person previously ceases to hold that office as provided by this section.

(3) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may appoint a person holding office as the Chief Executive for a further period, not exceeding 5 years, to take effect at the end of the person's current period of appointment. This subsection applies whether the person was appointed under subsection (1) or this subsection.

(4) An appointment under this section does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(5) A person is not eligible for appointment as Chief Executive if the person—

(a) is a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(b) is a member of the European Parliament or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(c) is a member of a local authority or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member.

(6) A person appointed under this section holds office on such conditions of employment as are specified in the person's document of appointment or are later agreed between the person and the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(7) The Chief Executive may engage in other remunerative employment only with the consent of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(8) The Chief Executive is subject to the control of the other members of the Regulatory Authority and, except as regards voting at meetings of that Authority, is required to comply with any lawful directions given by those members with respect to the carrying out of the Chief Executive's responsibilities.

(9) A person ceases to hold office as Chief Executive if the person—

(a) dies, or

(b) completes a term of office and is not re-appointed, or

(c) resigns the office by notice in writing addressed to the Chairperson, or

(d) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(e) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of the European Parliament or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(f) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of a local authority, or

(g) is adjudged bankrupt (either in the State or elsewhere) or enters into a composition with the person's creditors, or

(h) becomes physically or mentally incapable of performing the duties of Chief Executive, or

(i) is convicted of an offence (either in the State or elsewhere) and sentenced to serve a term of imprisonment for the offence, or

(j) is removed from office under subsection (10).

(10) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may remove or suspend the Chief Executive from office, but only for reasons notified in writing to the Chief Executive.

Appointment of acting Chief Executive in certain cases.

33G.—(1) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may appoint a qualified person to act in the office of the Chief Executive—

(a) during the illness or absence of a holder of that office, or

(b) while the holder is suspended from office, or

(c) during a vacancy in that office.

A person so appointed has, while acting as Chief Executive, all the responsibilities and powers of that office.

(2) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may, at any time, remove from office a person who is acting as Chief Executive.

(3) If a person is to be appointed under this section for a period of more than 6 months, the appointment does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(4) An acting Chief Executive is entitled to be paid such remuneration (including travelling and subsistence allowances) as the other members of the Regulatory Authority determine from time to time.

(5) A person is a qualified person for the purposes of this section if the person is—

(a) an officer of the Bank, or

(b) an employee of the Bank.

Responsibilities of Chief Executive of the Regulatory Authority.

33H.—(1) The Chief Executive is responsible for—

(a) bringing proceedings for offences arising under the designated enactments and designated statutory instruments, and

(b) exercising the day-to-day management of the Regulatory Authority, and

(c) performing the functions expressly imposed on the Chief Executive by other provisions of this Part, and

(d) carrying out such other responsibilities with respect to the functions and powers of the Regulatory Authority as may be imposed on the Chief Executive by that Authority.

(2) The Chief Executive has power to do whatever is necessary for or in connection with, or reasonably incidental to, carrying out the Chief Executive's responsibilities.

(3) In carrying out or exercising the Chief Executive's responsibilities or powers, the Chief Executive shall, as far as reasonably practicable, ensure that the resources of the Regulatory Authority allocated for carrying out those responsibilities or exercising powers are used effectively, efficiently and economically.

Chairperson of the Regulatory Authority.

33I.—(1) The Minister for Finance is to appoint one of the members, other than the Chief Executive or the Consumer Director, to be Chairperson of the Regulatory Authority.

(2) A member appointed as Chairperson holds office for 5 years from the date of the member's appointment as such, unless the member previously ceases to hold that office as provided by this section.

(3) A member holding office as Chairperson ceases to hold that office if the member—

(a) resigns from that office by notice in writing given to the Minister, or

(b) ceases to be a member.

(4) A person who ceases to be Chairperson because the person has ceased to be a member is eligible for re-appointment as Chairperson if the person is re-appointed as a member.

Power to impose levies.

33J.—(1) The purpose of this section is to enable the Regulatory Authority to have sufficient funds to enable it to perform its functions and exercise its powers.

(2) The Chief Executive, with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority, may make regulations prescribing levies to be paid by persons who are subject to regulation under the designated enactments and designated statutory instruments.

(3) In particular, regulations under subsection (2) may provide for any of the following matters:

(a) the activities, services or other matters for which specified kinds of levies are payable;

(b) the persons, or classes of persons, who are required to pay specified kinds of levies;

(c) the amounts of specified kinds of levies;

(d) the periods in respect of which, or the dates by which, specified levies are to be paid to the Regulatory Authority;

(e) penalties that are payable by a person who fails to pay a levy on time;

(f) the keeping of records, and the making of returns to the Regulatory Authority, by persons who are liable to pay a specified levy;

(g) the collection and recovery of levies.

(4) Regulations made under this section do not take effect until approved by the Minister.

(5) A levy prescribed in respect of credit unions is to be fixed so that the total amounts of levies collected or recovered from credit unions does not exceed the total amount of costs incurred in performing the functions and exercising the powers of the Bank under the Credit Union Act 1997 .

(6) The Chief Executive may, by proceedings brought in a court of competent jurisdiction, recover as a debt an amount of levy payable under regulations in force under this section.

(7) The Chief Executive may refund the whole or a part of a levy prescribed under this section, but only with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(8) The Chief Executive can amend or revoke a regulation made under this section, but only with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(9) An amendment or revocation of regulations made under this section does not take effect until approved by the Minister.

(10) In this section, ‘levy’ does not include a fee.

Power of Chief Executive to prescribe fees.

33K.—(1) The Chief Executive may, with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority, make regulations prescribing fees for the purpose of any enactment that provides for the payment of a fee by reference to this section.

(2) The Chief Executive may, with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority, make regulations providing for all or any of the following matters:

(a) the persons, or classes of persons, who are required to pay specified kinds of fees;

(b) the amounts of specified kinds of fees;

(c) the collection of fees.

(3) Regulations of the kind referred to in subsection (2) may be included in regulations made under subsection (1).

(4) Regulations made under this section do not take effect until approved by the Minister.

(5) The Chief Executive may, by proceedings brought in a court of competent jurisdiction, recover as a debt an amount of fee payable under regulations in force under this section.

(6) The Chief Executive may refund the whole or a part of a fee prescribed under this section, but only with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(7) The Chief Executive may amend or revoke a regulation made under this section, but only with the agreement of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(8) An amendment or revocation of regulations made under this section does not take effect until approved by the Minister.

(9) The Public Offices Fees Act 1879 does not apply to fees prescribed under this section.

Provision of funds by Bank to Regulatory Authority to meet shortfall.

33L.—(1) If at any time it appears to the Board that the funds raised from levies and fees prescribed by regulations in force under sections 33J and 33K are, or are likely to be, insufficient to enable the Regulatory Authority to properly perform its functions and exercise its powers, the Bank may provide the Authority with such funds as the Board considers necessary to enable the Authority to perform its functions and exercise its powers.

(2) The provision of funds under this section is subject to such conditions as the Board thinks fit to impose.

(3)  (a)  The Board may provide funds under this section only after the Minister has approved the amount of the funds concerned and the conditions (if any) subject to which those funds are to be provided.

(b) Before deciding whether or not to give approval under paragraph (a), the Minister is required to consult with the Governor and the Governor may express his or her opinion on the amount of funds concerned, so far as it could affect—

(i) the carrying out by the Bank of its obligations with respect to the promotion of the financial stability of the State, and

(ii) the performance of the functions of the Bank in its capacity as a member of the European System of Central Banks.

(4) In approving any amount of funds under subsection (3), the Minister is required to have regard to the functions and powers of the Bank under the Rome Treaty and the ESCB Statute.

Regulatory Authority to keep proper accounts.

33M.—(1) The Regulatory Authority shall keep accounting records that properly record and explain its transactions.

(2) The Regulatory Authority shall, as soon as practicable after the end of each financial year, provide the Bank with sufficient information about that Authority's financial affairs as will enable the Bank to comply with section 6H(2) for that year.

(3) The Regulatory Authority shall ensure that its accounting records comply with any accounting standards notified to that Authority in writing by either the Board or the Governor.

(4) The Regulatory Authority shall keep its accounting records for 6 years after the transactions to which they relate are completed and may, at the end of that period, either retain those records or dispose of them in such manner as it considers appropriate. This subsection has effect despite any other enactment to the contrary.

(5) The Regulatory Authority is required to make the records available at all reasonable times for inspection—

(a) by any member of the Board, or

(b) by any member of that Authority who is not a member of the Board, or

(c) by the Comptroller and Auditor General that is required for the performance of that officer's functions or by a person employed in the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General.

Regulatory Authority to prepare annual estimate of income and expenditure.

33N.—(1) Not later than 3 months before the beginning of each financial year, or within such extended period as the Minister may allow, the Regulatory Authority shall—

(a) prepare a statement setting out estimates of its income and expenditure for that year, and

(b) submit the statement to the Minister for approval of so much of the statement as relates to paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (2).

(2) The statement must—

(a) specify the amounts expected to be collected and recovered during the financial year concerned from the imposition of levies under section 33J, and

(b) specify any other sources from which funds are expected to be obtained during that year to finance the Regulatory Authority's activities and the amounts expected to be raised from those sources, and

(c) specify the activities that the Regulatory Authority proposes to undertake during that year.

(3) Before submitting the statement to the Minister for approval for the purposes of subsection (1)(b), the Regulatory Authority shall provide the Governor with particulars of the estimates referred to in subsection (1)(a). As soon as practicable after being provided with those particulars, the Governor shall give the Regulatory Authority the Governor's views on those estimates, but only in so far as they affect—

(a) the carrying out by the Bank of its obligations with respect to the promotion of the financial stability of the State, and

(b) the performance of the functions of the Bank in its capacity as a member of the European System of Central Banks.

(4) The Minister is required to consult both the Governor and the Board before giving approval for the purposes of subsection (1)(b).

(5) In giving approval for the purposes of subsection (1)(b), the Minister may so approve either without amendment or with such amendment as may be agreed with the Regulatory Authority. The statement, as may be so amended, shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it has been approved. In exercising the power conferred by this subsection, the Minister is required to have regard to the functions and powers of the Bank under the Rome Treaty and the ESCB Statute.

Regulatory Authority to provide Minister with annual report and other reports.

33O.—(1) (a) The Regulatory Authority is required to prepare and provide the Minister with—

(i) an annual report, and

(ii) from time to time, such other reports,

relating to the performance of its functions and the exercise of its powers as the Minister may from time to time specify.

(b) As soon as practicable after receiving a copy of the Regulatory Authority's annual report, the Minister shall arrange for a copy of that report to be laid before each House of the Oireachtas.

(2) The Regulatory Authority may not provide information in a report under subsection (1) relating to a matter if to do so would contravene a provision of a law of the State or would be inconsistent with the Rome Treaty or the ESCB Statute. However, this subsection does not prevent that Authority from including confidential information in such a report if the information—

(a) is included with the consent of the person who provided the information, or

(b) relates to a Director, a member of the Regulatory Authority or a person employed by or within the Bank.

Regulatory Authority to prepare strategic plan.

33P.—(1) The Regulatory Authority shall, at least 3 months before the beginning of each financial year—

(a) prepare for the year a strategic plan that complies with this section, and

(b) submit the plan to the Minister.

(2) A strategic plan must specify—

(a) the objectives of the Regulatory Authority's activities for the financial year concerned, and

(b) the nature and scope of the activities to be undertaken, and

(c) the strategies and policies for achieving those objectives, and

(d) targets and criteria for assessing the performance of the Authority, and

(e) the uses for which it is proposed to apply the Authority's resources.

(3) If the Minister has in writing notified the Regulatory Authority of any requirements with respect to the form in which its strategic plan is to be prepared, the plan must comply with those requirements.

(4) As soon as practicable after receiving the Regulatory Authority's strategic plan, the Minister shall arrange for the plan to be laid before both Houses of the Oireachtas.

(5) As soon as practicable after becoming aware that subsection (4) has been complied with, the Regulatory Authority shall publish its strategic plan and take all reasonably practical steps to implement it.

Chapter 2

Consumer Director

Appointment of Consumer Director.

33Q.—(1) The other members of the Regulatory Authority shall appoint a person as the Consumer Director of that Authority.

(2) A person appointed as Consumer Director holds office for a period not exceeding 5 years from the date of appointment, unless the person previously ceases to hold that office as provided by this section.

(3) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may appoint a person holding office as the Consumer Director for a further period, not exceeding 5 years, to take effect at the end of the person's current period of appointment. This subsection applies whether the person was appointed under subsection (1) or this subsection.

(4) An appointment under this section does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(5) A person is not eligible for appointment as Consumer Director if the person—

(a) is a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(b) is a member of the European Parliament or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(c) is a member of a local authority or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member.

(6) A person appointed as Consumer Director holds office on such conditions of employment as are specified in the person's document of appointment or are later agreed between the person and the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(7) The Consumer Director may engage in other remunerative employment only with the consent of the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(8) A person ceases to hold office as Consumer Director if the person—

(a) dies, or

(b) completes a term of office and is not re-appointed, or

(c) resigns the office by notice in writing addressed to the other members of the Regulatory Authority, or

(d) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(e) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of the European Parliament or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(f) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of a local authority, or

(g) is adjudged bankrupt (either in the State or elsewhere) or enters into a composition with the person's creditors, or

(h) becomes physically or mentally incapable of performing the duties of Consumer Director, or

(i) is convicted of an offence (either in the State or elsewhere) and sentenced to serve a term of imprisonment for the offence, or

(j) is removed from office under subsection (9).

(9) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may (but only after consulting the Minister) remove or suspend the Consumer Director from office, but only for reasons notified in writing to the Consumer Director.

Appointment of acting Consumer Director in certain cases.

33R.—(1) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may, from time to time, appoint a qualified person to act in the office of Consumer Director—

(a) during the illness or absence of the holder of that office, or

(b) while the holder is suspended from office, or

(c) during a vacancy in that office.

A person so appointed has, while acting as Consumer Director, all the responsibilities and powers of that office.

(2) If a person is to be appointed under this section for a period of more than 6 months, the appointment does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(3) The other members of the Regulatory Authority may, at any time, remove from office a person appointed under this section.

(4) A person appointed under this section is entitled to be paid such remuneration (including travelling and subsistence allowances) as the other members of the Regulatory Authority determine from time to time.

(5) A person is a qualified person for the purposes of this section if the person is an employee of the Bank.

Responsibilities of Consumer Director.

33S.—(1) The Consumer Director is responsible—

(a) for managing the performance and exercise of such of the functions and powers of the Bank under the enactments and statutory instruments specified in subsection (2) as the other members of the Regulatory Authority notify to the Consumer Director in writing from time to time, and

(b) for monitoring the provision of financial services to consumers of those services to the extent that the Consumer Director considers appropriate, having regard to the public interest and to the interests of those consumers.

(2) The following are the enactments and statutory instruments referred to in subsection (1)(a):

(a) the Consumer Credit Act 1995 , in so far as that Act relates to the performance or exercise of functions or powers of the Bank;

(b) sections 37 and 52 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 , and section 23 of that Act (but only in so far as that section provides for the protection of investors);

(c) sections 38 and 52 of the Stock Exchange Act 1995 , and section 31 of that Act (but only in so far as that section provides for the protection of investors);

(d) section 117 of the Central Bank Act 1989 (but only in so far as that section relates to consumers of financial services);

(e) sections 43B to 43FF of the Insurance Act 1989 , and section 61 of that Act (but only in so far as that section relates to consumers of financial services);

(f) such other enactments, and such statutory instruments, as are specified in the regulations.

(3) The Consumer Director has power to do whatever is necessary for or in connection with, or reasonably incidental to, carrying out the responsibilities imposed by subsection (1).

(4) The Consumer Director shall manage the functions and powers of the Bank referred to in subsection (1)(a) in a way that is consistent with—

(a) the orderly and proper functioning of financial markets, and

(b) the prudential supervision of providers of financial services.

(5) In managing the functions and powers of the Bank referred to in subsection (1)(a), the Consumer Director shall, as far as reasonably practicable, ensure that the resources of the Bank allocated for the performance and exercise of those functions and powers are used effectively, efficiently and economically.

(6) The Consumer Director may issue codes or impose requirements under an enactment or statutory instrument referred to in subsection (2), but only in the name of the Regulatory Authority and after those codes or requirements have been approved by the other members of the Regulatory Authority.

(7) In carrying out the responsibilities and exercising the powers imposed or conferred by this section, the Consumer Director is, through the Chief Executive, subject to the control of the other members of the Regulatory Authority and is required to comply with any lawful directions given by those other members with respect to the carrying out of those responsibilities or the exercise of those powers.

(8) Nothing in this section precludes the Regulatory Authority from itself performing a function, or exercising a power, of the Bank referred to in subsection (1)(a).

(9) The Regulatory Authority may require the Consumer Director to assist it in relation to the exercise of any other matter for, or in connection with, or reasonably incidental to functions to be carried out by the Consumer Director.

Consumer Director to prepare annual report.

33T.—(1) The Consumer Director shall, not later than 2 months after the end of a financial year—

(a) prepare an annual report specifying the activities of that Director during that year, and

(b) submit the report to the Regulatory Authority.

(2) An annual report must be in such form and deal with such matters as the Chief Executive has notified to the Consumer Director after consulting the Regulatory Authority.

(3) In particular, an annual report must include information specifying—

(a) how far the Consumer Director has promoted the interests of consumers of relevant financial services during the financial year concerned, and

(b) what steps have been taken by the Regulatory Authority to increase the awareness of consumers of relevant financial services of the cost to consumers, risks and benefits involved in using those services, and

(c) the extent to which competition exists among providers of those services in so far as it affects consumers of those services, and

(d) developments that have taken place with respect to the provision of those services in so far as those developments affect consumers of those services.

(4) This section does not oblige the Consumer Director to identify specific costs to consumers, risks or benefits in relation to the provision of a relevant financial service.

(5) Nothing in this section precludes the Consumer Director from communicating directly with the Registrar of Credit Unions on any matter.

(6) In this section, ‘relevant financial service’ means a financial service the provision of which is subject to regulation by the Regulatory Authority under the designated enactments and the designated statutory instruments.

Consumer Director to provide information, reports and advice to Chief Executive.

33U.—(1) The Consumer Director is required to provide the Chief Executive with such information, reports and advice relating to the performance and exercise of that Director's responsibilities and powers as the Chief Executive requires from time to time.

(2) The Consumer Director is also required to provide the Chief Executive with such reports and advice relating to matters connected with that Director's responsibilities and powers as the Chief Executive requires from time to time.

Consumer Director to prepare strategic plan.

33V.—(1) The Consumer Director shall, at least 3 months before the beginning of each financial year—

(a) prepare for the year a draft strategic plan that complies with this section, and

(b) submit the draft plan to the Chief Executive for approval.

(2) A draft strategic plan must specify—

(a) the objectives of the Consumer Director for the financial year concerned, and

(b) the nature and scope of the activities to be undertaken, and

(c) the strategies and policies for achieving those objectives and how the resources allocated to the Consumer Director are proposed to be used, and

(d) targets and criteria for assessing the performance of the Consumer Director.

(3) If the Chief Executive has notified the Consumer Director of any requirements with respect to the form in which a draft strategic plan is to be prepared, that Director shall ensure that the plan complies with those requirements.

(4) The Chief Executive may approve a strategic plan either with or without amendment.

(5) On being approved under subsection (4), a draft strategic plan prepared for a financial year becomes the strategic plan for the Consumer Director for that year. The Consumer Director is required to take all reasonably practical steps to implement that plan.

(6) Nothing in this section precludes the Consumer Director from reporting directly to the Regulatory Authority on any matter.

Chapter 3

Registrar of Credit Unions

Interpretation: Chapter 3.

33W.—In this chapter, ‘Registrar’ means the Registrar of Credit Unions.

Appointment of Registrar of Credit Unions.

33X.—(1) The Regulatory Authority is to appoint a person as the Registrar of Credit Unions.

(2) A person appointed as Registrar holds office for a period not exceeding 5 years from the date of appointment, unless the person previously ceases to hold that office as provided by this section.

(3) The Regulatory Authority may appoint a person holding office as Registrar for a further period, not exceeding 5 years, to take effect at the end of the person's current period of appointment. This subsection applies whether the person was appointed under subsection (1) or this subsection.

(4) The appointment of a person as Registrar does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(5) A person is not eligible for appointment as Registrar if the person—

(a) is a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(b) is a member of the European Parliament or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(c) is a member of a local authority or is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as such a member.

(6) A person appointed as Registrar holds office on such conditions of employment as are specified in the person's document of appointment or are later agreed between the person and the Regulatory Authority.

(7) The Registrar may engage in other remunerative employment only with the consent of the members of the Regulatory Authority.

(8) A person ceases to hold office as Registrar if the person—

(a) dies, or

(b) completes a term of office and is not re-appointed, or

(c) resigns the office by notice in writing addressed to the members of the Regulatory Authority, or

(d) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of either House of the Oireachtas or is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(e) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of the European Parliament or to fill a vacancy in the membership of that Parliament, or

(f) is, with the person's consent, nominated as a candidate for election as a member of a local authority, or

(g) is adjudged bankrupt (either in the State or elsewhere) or enters into a composition with the person's creditors, or

(h) becomes physically or mentally incapable of performing the duties of Registrar, or

(i) is convicted of an offence (either in the State or elsewhere) and sentenced to serve a term of imprisonment for the offence, or

(j) is removed from office under subsection (9).

(9) The Regulatory Authority may (but only after consulting the Minister) remove or suspend the Registrar from office, but only for reasons notified in writing to the Registrar.

Appointment of acting Registrar of Credit Unions in certain cases.

33Y.—(1) The Regulatory Authority may, from time to time, appoint a qualified person to act in the office of Registrar—

(a) during the illness or absence of the holder of that office, or

(b) while the holder is suspended from office, or

(c) during a vacancy in that office.

A person so appointed has, while acting as Registrar, all the responsibilities and powers of that office.

(2) If a person is to be appointed under this section for a period of more than 6 months, the appointment does not take effect until the Minister approves it.

(3) The Regulatory Authority may, at any time, remove from office a person who is appointed under this section as Registrar.

(4) A person appointed under this section is entitled to be paid such remuneration (including travelling and subsistence allowances) as the Regulatory Authority determines from time to time.

(5) A person is a qualified person for the purposes of this section if the person is an employee of the Bank.

Signature of Registrar of Credit Unions.

33Z.—A signature purporting to be that of the Registrar is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, to be presumed for all purposes to be that of the holder of that office.

Responsibilities and powers of Registrar of Credit Unions.

33AA.—(1) The Registrar is responsible—

(a) as the delegate of the Regulatory Authority, for managing the performance and exercise of the functions and powers of the Bank under the Credit Union Act 1997 , and

(b) if management of the performance and exercise of the functions and powers of the Bank under any other Act or law are delegated to the Registrar, for managing the performance and exercise of those functions and powers.

(2) The Registrar has power to do whatever is necessary for or in connection with, or reasonably incidental to, carrying out the Registrar's responsibilities.

(3) In carrying out or exercising the Registrar's responsibilities or powers, the Registrar shall, as far as reasonably practicable, ensure that the resources of the Regulatory Authority allocated for carrying out those responsibilities or exercising powers are used effectively, efficiently and economically.

(4)  (a) In carrying out the responsibilities and exercising the powers imposed or conferred by this section, the Registrar is, through the Chief Executive, subject to the control of the Regulatory Authority and is required to comply with directions duly given by that Authority with respect to the carrying out of those responsibilities or the exercise of those powers.

(b) Any directions given in accordance with paragraph (a) shall be given within the scope of either or both—

(i) the Credit Union Act 1997 in respect of any functions and powers to which subsection (1)(a) relates, and

(ii) such other Act or law as may be relevant in respect of any functions or powers, the management of which stands delegated to the Registrar under subsection (1)(b).

(c) In issuing directions to the Registrar under this subsection which relate to the exercise of the functions and powers referred to in subsection (1)(a), the Regulatory Authority shall have regard to the particular nature of credit unions, in particular, by reference to—

(i) the conditions for the registration of a credit union as set out in section 6 of the Credit Union Act 1997 and to the objects and common bonds referred to in that section, and

(ii) the voluntary ethos of credit unions.

(5) The Regulatory Authority shall, from time to time, issue to the Registrar guidelines, not inconsistent with any law, with respect to consultation and co-operation with prescribed bodies and persons on matters concerning the functions and powers of those bodies and persons. The Registrar is required to comply with any such guidelines.

(6) The following bodies and persons are prescribed for the purposes of subsection (5):

(a) the Board;

(b) the Governor;

(c) the Regulatory Authority and the members of that Authority;

(d) the employees of the Bank.

(7) The Registrar is required to provide the Consumer Director with such information and assistance as the Consumer Director requests in relation to any complaint made by a person to that Director with respect to the conduct of a credit union.

Regulatory Authority to provide Registrar with adequate funds.

33AB.—(1) The Regulatory Authority is required to provide the Registrar with such funds as the Authority considers necessary to enable the Registrar to carry out the responsibilities and exercise the powers of the Registrar.

(2) The provision of funds under this section is subject to such conditions as the Regulatory Authority thinks fit to impose.

Registrar to prepare annual report.

33AC.—(1) The Registrar shall, not later than the end of September in each year—

(a) prepare an annual report specifying the activities of the Registrar during that year, and

(b) submit the report to the Regulatory Authority.

(2) The report must be in such form and deal with such matters as the Chief Executive has, after consulting the Regulatory Authority, notified to the Registrar.

Registrar to provide information, reports and advice to Chief Executive.

33AD.—The Registrar is required to provide the Chief Executive with such information relating to the performance and exercise of the Registrar's responsibilities and powers as the Chief Executive requires from time to time. That information may include (but is not limited to) information relating to—

(a) the use by the Registrar of the resources of the Bank that have been allocated for the performance and exercise of those responsibilities and powers, and

(b) the value of outcomes and outputs derived from the use of those resources.

Registrar to prepare strategic plan.

33AE.—(1) The Registrar shall, at least 3 months before the beginning of each financial year—

(a) prepare for the year a draft strategic plan that complies with this section, and

(b) submit the draft plan to the Regulatory Authority for approval.

(2) A draft strategic plan must specify—

(a) the objectives of the Registrar for the financial year concerned, and

(b) the nature and scope of the activities to be undertaken, and

(c) the strategies and policies for achieving those objectives and how the resources allocated to the Registrar are proposed to be used, and

(d) targets and criteria for assessing the performance of the Registrar.

(3) If the Regulatory Authority has notified the Registrar of any requirements with respect to the form in which a draft strategic plan is to be prepared, the Registrar shall take such steps as are necessary to ensure that the plan complies with those requirements.

(4) The Regulatory Authority may approve a strategic plan either with or without amendment.

(5) On being approved under subsection (4), a draft strategic plan prepared for a financial year becomes the strategic plan for the Registrar for that year. The Registrar is required to take all reasonably practical steps to implement that plan.

Registrar to keep proper accounts.

33AF.—(1) The Registrar shall keep accounting records that properly record and explain the Registrar's transactions.

(2) The Registrar shall, as soon as practicable after the end of each financial year, provide the Bank with sufficient information about the financial affairs of the Registrar as will enable the Bank to comply with section 6H(2) for that year.

(3) The Registrar shall ensure that the accounting records kept under this section comply with any accounting standards notified to the Registrar in writing by the Chief Executive.

(4) The Registrar is required to retain the accounting records for at least 6 years after the transactions to which they relate are completed.

(5) The Registrar is required to make the accounting records available at all reasonable times for inspection by any member of the Regulatory Authority.

PART IIIB

Provisions Applicable to the Bank and its Constituent Parts

Superannuation schemes for the benefit of officers and employees of Bank and its constituent parts.

33AG.—(1) This section applies to and in respect of the following persons:

(a) the Governor and former Governors;

(b) Directors and former Directors;

(c) members and former members of the Regulatory Authority;

(d) employees and former employees of the Bank.

(2) The Bank may establish and operate one or more superannuation schemes under which superannuation benefits are payable on the retirement or death of persons to whom this section applies. However, such a scheme does not take effect until it has been approved by the Minister.

(3) A superannuation scheme established under this section is to be embodied in rules made by the Bank. Those rules must provide for the operation of the scheme and, in particular, for—

(a) the making of contributions (including contributions by the Bank) towards the superannuation benefits to be paid under the scheme, and

(b) the payment of those benefits to or in respect of persons to whom this section applies.

(4) As soon as practicable after establishing a superannuation scheme or superannuation schemes under this section, the Bank shall establish a trust fund for holding contributions made to the scheme or to each of those schemes and for the payment of superannuation benefits under the scheme or schemes. However, if the Bank establishes two or more such superannuation schemes, a single trust fund may be established in respect of all or a group of those schemes.

(5) As soon as practicable after establishing a trust fund under this section, the Bank shall appoint two or more trustees to hold and operate the trust fund.

(6) The trustees of the trust fund relating to a superannuation scheme established under this section shall, from that fund, pay to or in respect of persons to whom this section applies on their retirement or death the appropriate superannuation benefits under the scheme.

(7) The Bank shall arrange for all rules made under this section to be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as practicable after they are made. If either House, within the 21 days on which it has sat after the rules are laid before it, passes a resolution annulling the rules, the rules are accordingly annulled, but without affecting the validity of anything previously done under them.

(8) In this section—

‘retirement’, in relation to a person referred to in subsection (1)(a), (b) or (c), includes not being re-appointed after the end of the person's term of office;

‘superannuation benefit’ means a superannuation benefit payable to or in respect of a person to whom this section applies or, where such a person has died, to the spouse or a child of that person, and includes a pension, a retirement allowance and a gratuity.

Special provisions for superannuation schemes established under Currency Act 1927 and Central Bank Act 1989 .

33AH.—(1) Despite the repeal of the Currency Act 1927 and section 15 of the Central Bank Act 1989 , the following schemes continue to have effect:

(a) any scheme operating under section 31 (4) of the Currency Act 1927 , immediately before the commencement of this section;

(b) any scheme operating under section 15 of the Central Bank Act 1989 , immediately before that commencement.

(2) A scheme continued by this section is taken to be rules for the purposes of the Interpretation Act 1937 .

(3) The Bank may, with the approval of the Minister, merge with a superannuation scheme established under section 33AG a scheme continued by this section. However, the Minister may give that approval only if satisfied that the persons who have accrued rights under the scheme continued by this section will have benefits under the merged scheme that are no less favourable than those under the scheme so continued.

(4) The Bank may take such action as is necessary to effect a merger under subsection (3).

Provisions applicable to superannuation schemes established under section 33AG or continued under section 33AII.

33AI.—(1) If the Revenue Commissioners so determine, a superannuation scheme established under section 33AG or continued under section 33AH is an exempt approved scheme for the purposes of Chapter 1 of Part 30 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 .

(2) The Minister may determine a trust fund established for the purposes of a superannuation scheme established under section 33AG or continued under section 33AH to be public funds for the purposes of the Superannuation Act 1892.

(3) Section 30 of the Pensions (Increase) Act 1964 , applies to a superannuation scheme established under section 33AG or continued under section 33AH.

(4) A superannuation benefit is not payable under a superannuation scheme established under section 33AG or continued under section 33AH if the benefit relates to the same period of service as that in respect of which a superannuation benefit has been paid under another such scheme.

(5) For the purposes of this section, ‘superannuation benefit’ has the same meaning as in section 33AG.

Bank and associates not liable for certain acts and omissions.

33AJ.—(1) This section applies to the following persons:

(a) the Bank;

(b) the members of the Board and of the Regulatory Authority;

(c) the Registrar of Credit Unions;

(d) the Registrar of the Appeals Tribunal;

(e) employees of the Bank;

(f) agents of the Bank or of any of its constituent parts.

(2) A person to whom this section applies is not liable for damages for anything done or omitted in the performance or purported performance or exercise of any of its functions or powers, unless it is proved that the act or omission was in bad faith.

(3) The fact that the Bank has authorised or revoked the authorisation, or regulates the activities, of a person, under any of its functions is not a warranty by the Bank as to the person's solvency or performance.

(4) The fact that the Bank in performing any of its functions—

(a) has approved or revoked the approval, or regulates the affairs or activities, of a stock exchange or a financial futures and options exchange, or

(b) has approved, amended, revoked or imposed rules, or has consented or refused to consent to amendments of rules,

is not a warranty by the Bank as to the solvency or performance of the exchange or any member of the exchange.

(5) Neither the State nor the Bank is liable for losses incurred because of the insolvency, default or performance of a person or body referred to in subsection (3) or (4).

(6) Nothing in subsections (3) to (5) limits the effect of subsection (2).

(7) In this section, ‘agent’ includes a person appointed or authorised by the Bank, the Governor or the Chief Executive to perform any function or exercise a power under the Central Bank Acts or any other Act.

Disclosure of information.

33AK.—(1) (a) This subsection applies to the following persons:

(i) the Governor and every former Governor;

(ii) every Director and every former Director;

(iii) every member, member's deputy appointed under paragraph 4 of Schedule 3, former member's and former member's deputy who had been so appointed, of the Regulatory Authority;

(iv) the Chief Executive and every former Chief Executive;

(v) the Consumer Director and every former Consumer Director;

(vi) the Registrar of Credit Unions and every former Registrar of Credit Unions;

(vii) every other officer or employee and every other former officer or employee of the Bank;

(viii) every person who is or was formerly employed as a consultant, auditor or in any other capacity by the Bank or any constituent part of the Bank.

(b) A person to whom this subsection applies shall not disclose confidential information concerning—

(i) the business of any person or body whether corporate or incorporate that has come to the person's knowledge through the person's office or employment with the Bank, or

(ii) any matter arising in connection with the performance of the functions of the Bank or the exercise of its powers,

if such disclosure is prohibited by the Rome Treaty, the ESCB Statute or the Supervisory Directives.

(2)  (a) If requested by the Bank, the directors or those charged with the direction of a supervised entity shall, in accordance with paragraph (b), inform the Bank on the extent of any disclosure duly made by or on behalf of them or the entity to any authority, whether within the State or otherwise.

(b) Where a request is made under paragraph (a), the directors or those charged with the direction of a supervised entity shall give to the Bank all the information so requested that is in their possession or under their control, within—

(i) 30 days of receipt of the request, or

(ii) such longer period as the Bank may allow when making the request or subsequently.

(c) In responding to a request for information under this subsection, the directors or those charged with the direction of the supervised entity concerned shall exercise due diligence and shall not, by any act or omission, give or cause to be given to the Bank false or misleading information.

(3)  (a) Subject to subsection (1)(b) and paragraph (b), the Bank shall report, as appropriate, to—

(i) the Garda Síochána, or

(ii) the Revenue Commissioners, or

(iii) the Director of Corporate Enforcement, or

(iv) the Competition Authority, or

(v) any other body, whether within the State or otherwise, charged with the detection or investigation of a criminal offence, or

(vi) any other body charged with the detection or investigation of a contravention of—

(I) the Companies Acts 1963 to 2001, or

(II) the Competition Act 2002 , or in so far as any commencement order under that Act does not relate to the repeal of provisions of the Competition Acts 1991 and 1996, which would otherwise be subsisting those Acts,

any information relevant to that body that leads the Bank to suspect that—

(A) a criminal offence may have been committed by a supervised entity, or

(B) a supervised entity may have contravened a provision of an Act to which subparagraph (vi) relates.

(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply where the Bank is satisfied that the supervised entity has already reported the information concerned to the relevant body.

(c) Information contained in a report under paragraph (a) may only be used by the body to which it is addressed for the purposes of—

(i) the detection or investigation of a contravention of a provision of an Act to which paragraph (a)(vi) relates, or

(ii) any investigation which may lead to a prosecution for a criminal offence and any prosecution for the alleged offence.

(4) (a) In relation to a supervised entity, where the Bank identifies information—

(i) which it believes is or is likely to be material to an authority concerned with the enforcement of any law, and

(ii) which it believes it is unable, due to the provisions of subsection (1)(b), to disclose to that authority, and

(iii) in respect of which it is not satisfied that the information has been disclosed to that authority by the directors, or those charged with the direction, of the supervised entity,

then, the Bank shall issue to the directors or others duly charged with the direction of the supervised entity a document, to be known as a Disclosure Issue Notice, and the notice shall—

(I) specify the name of the authority concerned, and

(II) identify the information that the Bank has identified as causing it to issue the Disclosure Issue Notice.

(b) The Bank shall advise the authority concerned when a Disclosure Issue Notice is issued.

(c) Where a Disclosure Issue Notice is issued in respect of a company to which section 158 of the Companies Act 1963 applies (which relates to the directors' report), the directors' report shall comply with subsection (6B) of that section.

(5) Subject to subsection (1)(b), the Bank may disclose confidential information—

(a) required for the purposes of criminal proceedings, or

(b) with the consent of the person to whom the information relates and, if the information was obtained from another person, that other person, or

(c) where the Bank is or was the agent of a person — made to the person as the person's agent, or

(d) to an authority in a jurisdiction other than that of the State duly authorised to exercise functions similar to any one or more of the statutory functions of the Bank and which has obligations in respect of nondisclosure of information similar to the obligations imposed on the Bank under this section, or

(e) to any institution of the European Community because of the State's membership of the Community, or to the European Central Bank for the purpose of complying with the Rome Treaty or the ESCB Statute, or

(f) to an approved stock exchange, within the meaning of the Stock Exchange Act 1995

(i) in respect of member firms of the exchange for the purpose of monitoring compliance by member firms with stock exchange rules or with conditions or requirements imposed by the Bank, or with both, or

(ii) where the Bank considers it necessary to do so, either for the proper and orderly regulation of stock exchanges and their member firms or for the protection of investors, or for both, or

(g) to a financial futures and options exchange, within the meaning of section 97 of the Central Bank Act 1989 , whose rules have been approved by the Bank under Chapter VIII of the Central Bank Act 1989

(i) for the purpose of monitoring compliance by the members of that exchange with those rules or with conditions or requirements imposed by the Bank, or with both, or

(ii) where the Bank considers it necessary to do so for the proper and orderly regulation of futures and options exchanges and their members, or

(h) to—

(i) an inspector appointed under the Companies Acts 1963 to 2001, or section 57 of the Stock Exchange Act 1995 , or

(ii) a Committee appointed under section 65 of the Stock Exchange Act 1995 , or

(i) to a body that is a competent authority for the purpose of Council Directive 93/22/EEC of 10 May 1993 or Council Directive 93/6/EEC of 15 March 1993, or

(j) to an approved professional body—

(i) for the purpose of monitoring compliance by investment business firms with rules or with conditions or requirements imposed by the Bank, or

(ii) where the Bank considers it necessary to do so for the proper and orderly regulation of investment business firms, or

(k) to—

(i) a Committee appointed under section 74 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 , or

(ii) a person nominated or approved of by a supervisory authority in accordance with section 51(2) of that Act, or

(iii) an inspector appointed by the Court under Part VIII of that Act, or

(l) to a product producer in respect of investment business services or investment advice provided by a restricted activity investment product intermediary who holds an appointment in writing from the producer under section 27 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 , or

(m) to an officer of statistics (as defined by section 20 of the Statistics Act 1993 ) in connection with the collection, compilation, analysis or interpretation of data relating to balance of payments, national accounts or any other financial statistics prepared for those purposes, or

(n) for the purpose of complying with section 57 (2) or 57A(3) of the Criminal Justice Act 1994 , or

(o) to the Comptroller and Auditor General that is required for the performance of that officer's functions or to a person employed in the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General, or

(p) to an auditor to whom section 6H applies, or

(q) to the Minister for the Environment and Local Government in connection with that Minister's functions under the national housing programme with respect to a mortgage lender, or

(r) to the Investor Compensation Company Limited, or to a subsidiary of that company established by the Bank in order to provide administrative services to that company, or

(s) for the purposes of the hearing of an appeal by the Appeals Tribunal, or

(t) for the purpose of complying with a requirement imposed under section 33AM or by or under any other law, or

(u) where the Bank is in receipt of information from an authority in a jurisdiction other than the State duly authorised to exercise functions similar to one or more of the statutory functions of the Bank, made with the permission of that authority, or

(v) to a liquidator, examiner, receiver or any other person or body involved in the liquidation or bankruptcy of a supervised entity in relation to that entity, in accordance with the Supervisory Directives, where applicable, or

(w) to the auditor of a supervised entity in relation to that entity, in accordance with the Supervisory Directives, where applicable, or

(x) to any body established under law for the purposes of overseeing auditors, in accordance with the terms of the Supervisory Directives, where applicable, or

(y) to the Director of Corporate Enforcement for the purpose of any investigation under Part II (as amended) the Companies Act 1990 , or to an officer of the Director for the purposes of the Director's functions and in accordance with the terms of the Supervisory Directives, where applicable, or

(z) to the Minister in accordance with the terms of the Supervisory Directives in relation to the Minister's responsibility for legislation on the supervision of supervised entities or to an inspector, appointed by the Minister and acting on the Minister's behalf, or

(aa) in accordance with Article 25(7) of Council Directive 93/22/EEC of 10 May 1993 on investment services in the securities field, to a body which has the function of providing clearing or settlement services for one of the State's markets where necessary for the performance of its functions, or

(ab) in accordance with the terms of Council Directive 92/49/EEC of 18 June 1992 in respect of insurance undertakings, to bodies which administer compulsory winding up proceedings or guarantee funds, where necessary for the performance of their functions, or

(ac) in accordance with the terms of Council Directive 92/96/EEC of 10 November 1992 in respect of assurance undertakings, to bodies which administer compulsory winding up proceedings or guarantee funds, where necessary for the performance of their functions, or

(ad) to the Pensions Board that is required for the performance of its functions, or

(ae) in summary or collective form, such that individual persons or bodies cannot be identified, in legal proceedings where a supervised entity has been declared bankrupt or is being compulsorily wound up, but only if the information disclosed does not concern the business of any person or body which, to the knowledge of the Bank, may be, or has been involved in attempts to rescue that supervised entity at any stage, or

(af) if the Bank is satisfied that the disclosure is necessary to protect consumers of relevant financial services or to safeguard the interests of the Bank, or

(ag) if the disclosure arises in relation to—

(i) the operations of the Bank in any financial market, or

(ii) the issue by the Bank or the European Central Bank of legal tender, or

(iii) the pursuit by the Bank of the objectives set out in section 6A of the Central Bank Act 1942 , or

(ah) to a Tribunal of Inquiry established under the Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Acts 1921 to 2002, or

(ai) to the Revenue Commissioners in relation to their functions in a manner such that no supervised entity can be identified, or

(aj) to the Registrar of Friendly Societies that is required for the performance of the Registrar's functions.

(6) Any person or entity to whom confidential information is provided under subsection (3)(a) or (5) shall comply with the provisions on professional secrecy in the Supervisory Directives in holding and dealing with information provided to them by the Bank.

(7) The Bank may, for the purposes of subsection (5)(d) or otherwise, require from a supervised entity any information for the purposes of the Bank assisting an authority to which that subsection relates, but the Bank may only require such information where the information requested is, in the opinion of the Bank, to assist the authority in the carrying out of its regulatory functions.

(8) A person who—

(a) contravenes subsection (1)(b), or

(b) contravenes paragraph (a) or (c) of subsection (2), or

(c) fails to comply with section 158 (6B) of the Companies Act 1963 , for the purpose of a Disclosure Issue Notice issued under subsection (4),

commits an offence and is liable—

(i) on conviction on indictment to a fine not exceeding €30,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years, or both, or

(ii) on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding €3,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months, or both.

(9) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary provided for by or under any enactment, where in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, or such officer or officers of the Commissioners as they may from time to time designate for this purpose, there is information which may relate to—

(a) the commission of an offence, or

(b) a failure to comply with an obligation,

under the designated enactments or the designated statutory instruments, then the Commissioners or that officer shall disclose the information to the Bank.

(10) In this section—

‘approved professional body’ has the meaning given by section 55 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 ;

‘product producer’ has the meaning given by section 2 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 ;

‘restricted activity investment product intermediary’ has the meaning assigned to it by section 26 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 ;

‘Supervisory Directives’ means—

(a) Directive 2000/12/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 March 2000,

(b) Council Directive 93/22/EEC of 10 May 1993,

(c) Council Directive 85/611/EEC of 20 December 1985,

(d) Council Directive 92/49/EEC of 18 June 1992,

(e) Council Directive 92/96/EEC of 10 November 1992;

‘supervised entity’ means any person or body in relation to which the Bank exercises functions under the designated enactments or the designated statutory instruments.

Bank to inform persons of their obligations under section 33AK.

33AL.—(1) The Board shall inform every person who is about to be appointed—

(a) as Governor or as a Director, or

(b) as a member, or a member's deputy appointed under paragraph 4 of Schedule 3, of the Regulatory Authority, or

(c) as Chief Executive or Consumer Director, or

(d) as Registrar of Credit Unions, or

(e) as an other officer or employee of the Bank, or

(f) as a consultant or auditor or in any other capacity by the Bank or any constituent part of the Bank,

of the obligation imposed by section 33AK.

(2) A person can accept office as Governor or as Director, or as an officer or employee of the Bank, only if the person has acknowledged, in a form determined by the Board, that the person has been informed of the obligation imposed by section 33AK.

Certain persons required to attend proceedings of Oireachtas committees.

33AM.—(1) This section applies to the following persons:

(a) the Governor of the Bank;

(b) the Chairperson of the Regulatory Authority;

(c) the Chief Executive Officer of that Authority;

(d) the Consumer Director of that Authority;

(e) the Registrar of Credit Unions.

(2) A person to whom this section applies shall—

(a) if requested to do so, attend before the Joint Committee of the Oireachtas that is responsible for examining matters relating to the Bank, and

(b) provide that Committee with such information as it requires.

(3) Subsection (2) has effect subject to—

(a) the Rome Treaty and the ESCB Statute, and

(b) any restrictions that are imposed on a person to whom this section applies by or under the Central Bank Acts, or any other enactment, in relation to appearing before the Joint Committee referred to in subsection (2)(a).”.