Monday 18 December 2017

The Punt: We're rich! Or so the stats say

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Data from Eurostat shows the Irish are the most affluent people in the EU, save only for our kindred spirits (deadly rivals) in Luxembourg.

Figures released this week showed Irish gross domestic product (GDP) per capita - a standard international measure of wealth - stood at €55,100 in 2015. We are eclipsed only by the Grand Duchy, where the per-capita average comes in at a whopping €89,900 a year.

Before you order that yacht, remember that 2015 was the year of Leprechaun Economics - when the economy allegedly grew by more than a quarter, according to now widely rubbished measurements.

We might reflect how much we now have in common with little Luxembourg. Two small countries punching above their weight. Each with a thriving financial services industry. And, um, both named this week as two of the world's worst tax havens by Oxfam.

Enda flies with common people

PASSENGERS on flight FR7242 got a surprise when Enda Kenny joined their boarding queue at Dublin Airport on Tuesday, and then plonked down on an aisle seat for the four-hour Ryanair flight to Malta.

The Taoiseach chatted with holidaymakers on the packed flight, while he and a clatter of Fine Gaelers made their way to the congress of the European People's Party.

The meeting was a big political set-piece, and put Mr Kenny in the same spot as political allies Angela Merkel, Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker in the immediate wake of Theresa May triggering the UK's EU divorce.

The Government jet - which he may not have use of for long anyway - isn't up on blocks. The event was party business for Fine Gael, so Enda Kenny had to slum in with your correspondent and the rest of the little people.

Irish Independent

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