Monday 18 February 2019

Angela Merkel praises Ireland as a "shining example" of economic hope

Enda Kenny will hold talks with German chancellor Angela Merkel
Enda Kenny will hold talks with German chancellor Angela Merkel

Fiach Kelly in Berlin

GERMAN chancellor Angela Merkel says Ireland is a "shining example" of how countries can emerge stronger from the economic crisis.

Dr Merkel was speaking after a meeting with Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Berlin this afternoon, called in an advance of Ireland's presidency of the EU next year.

However, Dr Merkel did not give any more detail on any bank debt deal that may be done for Ireland, saying this is a matter for negotiation among eurozone finance ministers.

She congratulated Mr Kenny on receiving a 'European of the Year' award from a group of German publishers.

She said the award is "very justified...looking at what Ireland has been able to do over the past few years as regards the efforts put in to reforms, into improving competitiveness".

"Ireland indeed is one of the shining examples of how Europe will emerge stronger from the crisis than it went in," she added.

Mr Kenny again repeated that European leaders should stick to the agreement reached at the EU summit on June 29, when it was agreed that banking debt should be split from State debt.

Both leaders also repeated the line from their recent joint communiqué that Ireland is a "special case" and this would be taken in to account on bank debt negotiations.

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