Progress on easing Ireland’s debt burden was achieved after successful EU Summit at Dublin Castle
Finance Minister Michael Noonan said the decision to extend the term of Ireland’s bailout loans by an average of seven years should lead to an upgrading of the country's credit rating.
The decision to extend Ireland’s loan is the latest change to our bailout terms and shows that is an increased recognition at European level that the 2010 bailout was flawed.
Last night Mr Noonan said ESM funds won't be used to recapitalise Irish banks until 2014. The government wants to see the special EU bailout fund, the ESM - pay for the historic debts incurred by the taxpayer in recapitalising two Irish banks.
But Minister Noonan told journalists last night that the rules of the fund will not be finalised until at least next year.
On the way into today’s final session, Mr Noonan suggested that rating agency Moodys will upgrade Ireland’s rating from junk status. But the progress at Dublin Castle has done little to assuage the anger of some anti austerity protesters, who marched from Parnell square today to rally outside Dublin Castle.
Despite the finance ministers having departed from the castle before they arrived, an estimated 6,000 protestors took part. Fears of violent scenes proved unfounded as the protest passed off without incident.
IT is by now obvious that austerity alone isn't working in the eurozone. Record levels of unemployment, deficient demand, growing budget deficits, and a banking system still on life support, all support the argument that growth-friendly policies combined with fiscal consolidation measures make sense now.