Philip Lane, an economics professor at Trinity College Dublin, has been named by the Finance Minister as the new Governor of the Central Bank. 

He replaces Professor Patrick Honohan, who announced in May that he would retire by the end of the year. His retirement comes before his seven-year term as Governor was due to end in September 2016.

The Whately Professor of Political Economy at Trinity College, Professor Lane is also Director of the International Macroeconomics and Finance Programme at the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR). 

He received his PhD in Economics from Harvard in 1995 and was assistant professor of Economics and International Affairs at Columbia University during 1995-1997 before returning to Dublin.

His research interests include financial globalisation, macroeconomics of exchange rates and capital flows, macroeconomic policy design and European monetary integration.

The Professor has also acted as an academic consultant for the European Central Bank, European Commission, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, OECD and the  Asian Development Bank. 

He is also a member of the Royal Irish Academy.

In a statement, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said that Professor Lane's "outstanding economic, financial and policy making record ideally positioned him to lead the Central Bank in the coming years".  

He also said the Professor's appointment by ECB President Draghi to chair the Advisory Scientific Committee of the European Systemic Risk Board demonstrates the standing he is held in at European level.
Mr Noonan said that Professor Lane was chosen as the Government's nomination to the position after an extensive national and international executive search process to identify suitably qualified candidates in Ireland and abroad. 

Over 100 potential candidates were identified from around the world, with a wide-ranging and rigorous selection process resulting in the nomination of Professor Lane, the Minister added.

After that initial interview process, a shortlist of four candidates were presented for a final competitive interview by an interview panel.   

This was the first time such an open selection process was used for the appointment of the top job at the Central Bank Governor.

In today's statement, Minister Noonan once again paid tribute to Professor Honohan.

"Professor Honohan took up the position of Governor of the Central Bank at a very difficult time for our country in 2009. He has played a key role in stabilising our economy and in our move back towards prosperity and has also overseen significant reform in the Central Bank during this period," he said.  

"As Minister for Finance, I have greatly valued his expertise and counsel. On behalf of the Government I sincerely thank him for his contribution and wish him every success in the future," he added. 

Meanwhile, Professor Honohan has welcomed the appointment of Professor Philip Lane as the 11th Governor of the Central Bank. 

"I have known and worked with Philip for almost 20 years and I am confident that he has the capacity and commitment to lead the Central Bank of Ireland as it delivers on its mandate in the coming years," he stated. 

In a statement, the Central Bank said that Mr Honohan will be stepping down at a date, to be finalised, around the end of November.

Until then, he remains a member of the ECB Governing Council. The ECB is due to meet this week to discuss euro zone interest rates. 

The appointment of Professor Honohan at the height of the financial crisis in 2009 broke decades of tradition of promoting the top civil servant at the Department of Finance to the role of governor. 

Despite the economic upturn, Professor Lane will face legacy issues in the banks. The number of mortgage customers more than two years behind in their payments still rising and there is opposition to the Central Bank's new curbs on mortgage lending.