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We're still among Europe's richest

IRISH people remain among the wealthiest in Europe, despite the country struggling through the worst recession in modern history.

European statistics office Eurostat outlined figures that show Ireland had the third highest GDP per capita in the EU in 2010.

This was expressed in terms of how much expendable money is available or purchasing power standards (PPS), which was listed at 128pc.

While Ireland's GDP is just behind the Netherlands at 116pc, there is a clear downward trend and between 2008 and 2010 it decreased by more than 13pc.

Ireland, together with the three Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, and Iceland, have seen the most substantial decline in their relative position in the period 2008-2010.

A separate measure of wealth -- the Actual Individual Consumption per capita (AIC) takes into account the money spent that is paid for by the State and others, such as education and medical cards and charity donations.

Luxembourg keeps its position at the top at 50pc above the average while Ireland's AIC was marginally above the average at 102pc -- down from 109pc in three years.