UK chancellor says Irish aid won't be rolled out for others
Published 02/12/2010 | 05:00
Chancellor of the British Exchequer George Osborne said the UK's £3.25bn (€3.87bn) bilateral loan to Ireland didn't mean he would be willing to offer the same support to other European countries in trouble.
"I've said that Ireland is a very special case," mr Osborne said, citing Britain's economic ties with the only country with which it shares a land border. "It's certainly not a blank check for other countries."
Mr Osborne said the UK hadn't offered a bilateral loan to Greece earlier this year. He refused to be drawn on possible bailouts for Portugal or Spain, but said Britain would still be prepared to offer support through the IMF.
European leaders are struggling to contain a worsening sovereign debt crisis that forced Ireland last week to follow Greece and ask for an international bailout. The chancellor denied that a banking crisis in Ireland would have led to a secondary crisis in Britain.
"There's no indication that I've received that that's the case," he said. (Bloomberg)