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Department of Finance (Ireland)

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Department of Finance
Department overview
Formed22 January 1919
JurisdictionGovernment of Ireland
HeadquartersGovernment Buildings,
Merrion Street,
53°20′21″N 6°15′13″W / 53.33917°N 6.25361°W / 53.33917; -6.25361
Annual budget€439 million (2017)
Minister responsible
Department executive
Child agencies
WebsiteOfficial website Edit this at Wikidata

The Department of Finance (Irish: An Roinn Airgeadais) is a department of the Government of Ireland. It is led by the Minister for Finance and is assisted by two Minister of State.

The Department of Finance is responsible for the administration of the public finances of the Republic of Ireland and all powers, duties and functions connected with the same, including in particular, the collection and expenditure of the revenues of Ireland from whatever source arising.

Departmental team[edit]


Metalwork at Department of Finance buildings

The official headquarters and ministerial offices of the department are in Government Buildings, Merrion Street, Dublin. The Department of Finance has a central role in implementing Irish Government policy, in particular the Programme for Government, and in advising and supporting the Minister for Finance and the Government on the economic and financial management of the State and the overall management and development of the public sector.

There are nine divisions within the Department of Finance:[3]

  • Shareholding and Financial Advisory Division
  • Tax Division
  • Economic Division
  • Financial Services Division with responsibility for Legal Unit
  • EU and International Division
  • Human Resources Division
  • International Finance and Climate Division
  • Banking Division
  • Corporate Affairs with responsibility for the Finance unit and FMU


There was a Ministry of Finance in the Ministry of Dáil Éireann of the Irish Republic established on 22 January 1919.[4] It was provided a statutory basis by the Ministers and Secretaries Act 1924, passed soon after the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922. This act provided it with:[5]

the administration and business generally of the public finance of Saorstát Eireann and all powers, duties and functions connected with the same, including in particular the collection and expenditure of the revenues of Saorstát Eireann from whatever source arising (save as may be otherwise provided by law), and the supervision and control of all purchases made for or on behalf of and all supplies of commodities and goods held by any Department of State and the disposal thereof, and also the business, powers, duties and functions of the branches and officers of the public service specified in the first part of the Schedule to this Act, and of which Department the head shall be, and shall be styled an t-Aire Airgid or (in English) the Minister for Finance.

The Schedule assigned it with the duties of the following bodies:[6]

  • The business and functions formerly administered, and discharged by the British Treasury in Ireland.
  • The Revenue Commissioners.
  • The Paymaster General and Deputy Paymaster for Ireland.
  • The Government Actuary.
  • The Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland.
  • The Civil Service Commission.
  • The Commissioner of Valuation and Boundary Surveyor for Ireland.
  • The Ordnance Survey.
  • The Superintendent of the Teachers' Pension Office.
  • The Stationery Office.
  • The Old Age Pensions, save as regards appeals governed by Statute.
  • The Post Office Savings Bank (administered through the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs as agent).
  • The Registrar of Friendly Societies.

The Department of Finance has retained its title since its establishment. In 1973, its public service functions were transferred to the new Department of the Public Service.[7] Until 1980, the position of the Minister for the Public Service was required by law to be assigned to the Minister for Finance.[8][9] In 1987, these functions were transferred back to the Department of Finance.[10]

In 1980, the functions of the Department of Economic Planning were transferred to the Department of Finance.[11] These functions are principally to promote and co-ordinate economic and social planning, including sectoral and regional planning, to identify development policies, to review the methods adopted by departments of state to implement such policies and generally to advise the government on economic and social planning matters.

In July 2011, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform was established, and a considerable number of the functions of the Department of Finance were transferred to that department.[12][13]

Secretaries of the Department[edit]

Secretary of the Department[edit]

Name Term of office
William O'Brien February 1922 21 February 1923
Joseph Brennan 22 February 1923 20 September 1927
James J. McElligott 21 September 1927 31 March 1953
Owen J. Redmond 1 April 1953 29 May 1956
T. K. Whitaker 30 May 1956 28 February 1969
Charles H. Murray 1 March 1969 29 February 1976
M.N. Ó Murchú 1 March 1976 17 October 1977
Tomás F. Ó Cofaigh 18 October 1977 31 October 1981
Maurice F. Doyle 1 November 1981 30 April 1987
Seán P. Cromien 1 May 1987 12 June 1994
Paddy Mullarkey 13 June 1994 1 September 1997

Secretary General of the Department[edit]

Name Term of office
Paddy Mullarkey 2 September 1997 9 March 2000
John Hurley 10 March 2000 10 March 2002
Tom Considine 11 March 2002 30 June 2006
David Doyle 1 July 2006 29 January 2010
Kevin Cardiff 1 February 2010 2 February 2012
John Moran 6 March 2012 7 May 2014
Derek Moran 3 July 2014 May 2021
John Hogan May 2021 Incumbent

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bodies under the Aegis of the Department of Finance". finance.gov.ie. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  2. ^ "List of Ministers and Ministers of State". Government of Ireland. 18 December 2018. Retrieved 13 September 2021.
  3. ^ "About the Department of Finance – Sections of the department". Department of Finance. 7 January 2019. Retrieved 30 June 2021.
  4. ^ "DAIL MINISTRY – Dáil Éireann (1st Dáil) – Wednesday, 22 January 1919". Houses of the Oireachtas. Retrieved 2 November 2019.
  5. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries Act 1924, Section 1: Establishment of the Departments of State". Irish Statute Book. 21 April 1924. Retrieved 2 November 2019.
  6. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries Act 1924, Schedule". Irish Statute Book. 21 April 1924. Retrieved 5 October 2019.
  7. ^ "Public Service (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 1973". Irish Statute Book. 30 October 1973. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  8. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries (Amendment) Act 1973: Section 3, The Department of the Public Service". Irish Statute Book. 17 July 1973. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
  9. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries (Amendment) Act 1980: Section 7, Repeal". Irish Statute Book. 18 March 1980. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
  10. ^ "Public Service (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 1987". Irish Statute Book. 19 March 1987. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  11. ^ "Economic Planning and Development (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 1980". Irish Statute Book. 2 January 1980. Retrieved 27 September 2019.
  12. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries (Amendment) Act 2011". Irish Statute Book. 4 July 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
  13. ^ "Ministers and Secretaries (Amendment) Act 2011 (Appointed Day) Order 2011". Irish Statute Book. 5 July 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2011.

External links[edit]