Budget Deficit Targets Reached

05 January 2012 - Which Way to Pay

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Budget Deficit Targets Reached

Yesterday Ireland’s Government announced that it had succeeded in cutting its budget deficit in 2011. According to newly released exchequer returns, Ireland’s budget deficit heightened to nearly €25 billion, increasing from €18.7 billion in 2010 with the increase accredited to bank recapitalisations. The returns highlighted a 2011 deficit of 9.9% gross domestic product (GDP) coming in only just below the target of Ireland’s bail-out agenda with the International Monetary Fund and European Union.  Michael Noonan, Ireland’s minister for finance, has said that the results show “that we are making progress in returning our public finances to a more sustainable path.”

Ireland must be commended for meeting these targets especially considering the woes facing many of its European neighbours. However, despite meeting these budgetary targets a weaker economy is suggested by considerable weaker tax revenues that are not on course with what was expected. Mr Noonan did address the issue of worsening tax revenues seen as a result of the Eurozone crisis and the associated repercussion of economic uncertainty. Overall the figures released have been able to provide some comfort. Mr Noonan concluded his statement saying, “We enter 2012 with our finances under control and this further underpins the credibility of our 2012 budgetary forecasts.” Ireland will face the difficult year ahead in meeting 2012’s deficit targets considering the current climate.

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