EU 'confident' Ireland will meet deficit targets
The European Union said the contraction in Ireland’s economy in the second quarter shouldn’t derail the Government’s efforts to cut its budget deficit.
“We remain confident that the Irish authorities will take the necessary measures in order to meet their fiscal consolidation targets,” Amadeu Altafaj, spokesman for EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn, told reporters in Brussels today.
“That will be reflected in the budget for next year.”
Finance Minister Brian Lenihan said today that it’s “too early” to signal a tougher budget for 2011 after data yesterday showed the economy shrank 1.2pc in the April- June quarter from the previous three-month period.
Lenihan has pledged to cut the deficit to 3pc of gross domestic product by 2013 from 14pc last year.