Fianna Fáil Finance Spokesperson Michael McGrath has said the 2,200 Irish Life jobs in Ireland must be protected as part of the €1.3 billion sale of the business to Great-West Lifeco (Canada Life) and he has called on the Minister for Finance to clarify what commitments he has secured in that regard.
Deputy McGrath stated, “The sale of Irish Life to Great-West Lifeco is an undoubtedly an indication of confidence in the future of the Irish economy and particularly the life and pensions business. It is difficult to assess whether the price achieved of €1.3 billion represents good value for the State but it is at least to be welcomed that the State has not lost money on its investment in Irish Life.
“Irish Life is massive employer in Ireland with 2,200 employees currently on its books. I would ask the Minister for Finance to clarify what commitments he has received from Great-West Lifeco that existing employment levels at Irish Life will be retained. I fully expect that the Minister will have secured a binding commitment that these jobs are protected.
“When the Joint Administrators of Quinn Insurance sold the business to a joint venture of Liberty Mutual and Anglo Irish Bank in October 2011, an assurance was given that all 1,570 jobs would be secure for a minimum period of two years. However, a year later, the company announced that 285 people were being made redundant. I don’t want to see a repeat of that situation.
“I very much hope that the sale of Irish Life to Great-West Lifeco will open a new successful chapter in the history of the business. Irish Life has provided high-quality employment opportunities for many years and I hope this will continue long into the future.”