Barclays in discussions to expand their Dublin operations

The Government has welcomed the 'significant' announcement by the British bank

Barclays in discussions to expand their Dublin operations

Picture by: PA/PA Wire/PA Images

The Government has welcomed the announcement by Barclays bank that they are looking into 'extending' their Irish operation in preparation for Brexit.

The bank has had operations here since 1978, with around 100 people at its Dublin base.

It has been previously reported that the bank was looking to base its main EU hub on Dawson Street in the capital.

In a statement quoted by Reuters today, the bank said: "Barclays intends to utilize an existing licensed EU-based bank subsidiary to continue passported activity.

"Barclays Bank Ireland, which has a banking license and which we have operated for almost 40 years, provides a natural base and we are engaging with our regulators in discussions to extend its activities."

It comes as part of the firm's contingency planning to prepare for any potential changes to trading arrangements after Brexit.

The news was welcomed by the Government and state agencies.

Martin Shanahan, CEO of IDA Ireland, observed: "In a time of international political change across the world, businesses like Barclays are looking for certainty - Ireland provides a consistent, certain, pro-enterprise policy environment for businesses to thrive."

Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald, meanwhile, described it as a 'significant' announcement.

She said: "Barclays decision to expand here, highlights once again the attractiveness of locating in Ireland, particularly for companies in the International Financial Services Sector.

"Today's announcement is a strong vote of confidence in Ireland’s growing importance as a gateway into the single market."