Sunday 28 May 2017

Bailout has fallen at first hurdle

EU leaders must accept that the deal cannot be implemented and a debt crisis now looms, writes Colm McCarthy

MEETING: While the Taoiseach
was grabbing headlines, Minister
Brendan Howlin was holding talks
with EU and IMF officials. Photo: Tom Burke
MEETING: While the Taoiseach was grabbing headlines, Minister Brendan Howlin was holding talks with EU and IMF officials. Photo: Tom Burke

While the Taoiseach's trip to Washington and the May return fixture in Moneygall grabbed the headlines, the most important meeting of the week took place in Merrion Street, where Ministers Michael Noonan and Brendan Howlin hosted the International Monetary Fund, the EU Commission and the European Central Bank.

This was an unscheduled meeting held at the initiative of the new Government. It is clear that the principal purpose was to explain to the troika that the bailout deal for Ireland agreed on November 28 last cannot be implemented and needs to be revised.

Whatever about the EU Commission and the ECB, this will have come as no great shock to the IMF, whose officials have been making no secret of their unhappiness with the November deal.

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