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NERI: 3% Troika deficit target unlikely to be achieved by 2015

Date Released: 10 April 2013

On Wednesday April 10th the Nevin Economic Research Institute published its latest Quarterly Economic Observer outlining the think-tank’s most recent set of projections for the Republic of Ireland economy. These suggest a period of low-growth and high-unemployment for the next three years and include:

-        Low GDP growth of 1% and 1.2% over the next two years, increasing to 2% in 2015;

-        a further shrinking of the numbers employed in 2013, by 0.6%, with employment levels remaining static in 2014 and 2015;

-        unemployment remaining at 14.7% in 2013 and marginally increasing to 15% in 2014 and 2015 as net outward migration releases pressure on expanding labour supply due to rising youth cohorts;

-        Ireland’s gross debt peaking at 121.1% of GDP this year and reducing marginally in 2014 and 2015; and

-        While it is anticipated that Government will exceed its deficit (or General Government Balance, GGB) target in 2013, given our current economic outlook, we do not expect Government to reach the 3% Maastricht target by 2015.

Commenting on these forecasts, NERI Director Dr Tom Healy said “The story behind these figures is one of continued stagnation with sluggish growth and on-going high levels of unemployment”.

NERI senior economist, Dr Micheál Collins, stated that the depressed nature of the domestic economy combined with a weak international economic outlook, presents real challenges for Ireland achieving any form of sustainable economic recovery.

“Without growth, Government’s borrowing targets look ambitious and call into question the feasibility of the adjustment path currently being pursued”, Collins said.


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