Friday 23 February 2018

Summer statement to stress 'tight' year ahead'

Dáil Éireann. Stock picture
Dáil Éireann. Stock picture
Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

This week's Summer Economic Statement will focus on what's expected to be the "tight" levels of cash available for tax and spending measures.

The Cabinet will hold an extra meeting to discuss the statement ahead of its announcement on Wednesday.

While Taoiseach Leo Varadkar's ambitions for greater long-term capital expenditure are to be referenced, details of specific projects are unlikely to be forthcoming this week.

A source said the headline figure to be announced on Wednesday will be for the fiscal space available for Budget 2018.

This has been estimated as being as low as between €350m and €550m.

However, if the Government succeeds in delivering an effectively balanced Budget as planned next year, there will be additional scope for spending in the future.

Ministers are dampening expectations.

Richard Bruton said "this year will be very tight".

"This is going to be a difficult year," he told RTÉ's 'The Week in Politics'.

"But, nonetheless, I think we will be able to make some progress in using our economic recovery to help families who have been through a really tough time."

Irish Independent

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