Commenting on the news that UK Business Secretary Vince Cable MP has called for the Royal Bank of Scotland to be broken up, Friends of the Earth Scotland campaigner Mary Church said:

“We welcome Vince Cable’s comments that the government should take the opportunity presented by the taxpayer’s ownership of RBS to fundamentally reform the bank, instead of simply trying to return it to private hands as soon as possible.

“The substantial losses announced by RBS last month – for the fourth year running – make it clear that business as usual isn’t working for anyone except the bankers who continue to pull in huge bonuses.

“A sustainable economy is a local economy and there is a growing realisation that the big banks cannot cater for this and they are out of touch with local needs. It’s time for a wider debate on banking sector reform, and it’s good news that the Business Secretary has kicked things off at government level.”

Friends of the Earth Scotland believes it is time for fundamental reforms to make the banking system serve society, rather than the other way around.

The charity’s ‘Just Banking’ conference to be held on 19 and 20 April 2012 in Edinburgh will bring together leading economists and campaigners to debate positive proposals to address urgent questions such as:

How can we end violent booms and busts?

How can we get finance flowing into sectors with real social and environmental value?

What is the vision for Scotland’s future banking sector?

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact: Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland
 t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

1. Cable calls for RBS to be split up (BBC News)
www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17275884

2. Just Banking Conference in Edinburgh 19-20 April 2012
www.justbanking.org.uk

3. Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent.
www.foe-scotland.org.uk