Wednesday 18 October 2017

Gallic spat is now history, says Kenny

sarah collins

TAOISEACH Enda Kenny has declared the spat with France over Ireland's corporate tax rate is now "fini".

A French climbdown means the Government can now avail of a cut of almost two points in the interest rate it pays on EU loans. The reduction was granted primarily to help reduce Greece's mammoth debt burden.

"It's over -- c'est fini," Mr Kenny told reporters after an all-day emergency summit in Brussels. "There will be no conditions attached to the interest-rate reduction," he said.

Ireland will now pay close to 3.5pc to draw down the remainder of its €17.7bn loan from the bloc's financial stability facility.

A discount on the rest of the money Ireland is borrowing -- €22.5bn from a separate European Commission fund and just over €5bn from Britain, Sweden and Denmark -- may "follow on", officials said, after technical talks with the governments concerned.

Mr Kenny has estimated that the interest-rate reduction will save Irish taxpayers between €600m and €800m a year.

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