Sunday 18 February 2018

Cap in hand

• Well, isn't it extraordinary how all the bad news has come bubbling to the surface so swiftly on foot of us having done what the Government and most of the media told us was the only sensible thing to do, which was to ratify the fiscal treaty?

So much then for the theory that the country voting Yes might be seen as a positive by the people who matter in the EU, thereby, allowing us a little leeway in reducing our economically crippling bank debts. The response by the German government to Enda Kenny's trademark cap in hand, 'Oliver'-style submission last Friday was a curt "we see no need for movement at the moment" by the German finance minister's spokesman, and a condescending description as "a model bailout student" by a senior German official.

So much, too, for the hope of returning to the money markets next year. Credit ratings agency Fitch states that endorsing the treaty "does not change Ireland's situation, with the country set to run a deficit for some time" and that "the timing and cost of Ireland's return to the debt markets remain unclear".

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