The IMF staff report is being reported in the Times. It seems the Government have been quite selective in what they've been saying regarding the IMF's viewpoint on our performance and likely future performance....
Economic recovery in medium termNo guarantee of bailout exit even with rigorous adherence to reform programme....
Like the EU Commission staff report, disclosed by The Irish Times today, the IMF report also expresses concerns about the continuing problems with containing costs in the health sector; the problem of high numbers of long-term unemployed; and the increasing percentage of serious non-performing mortgages and other loans in the banking sector.
But it is in the overall economic outlook that most concern is expressed. One of the main risks identified include the situation in the financial sector. It also refers to other major risks, including recovery being contingent on improvements in the UK and US as well as the euro area, and a fiscal drag on growth caused by fiscal consolidation.
“These risks to growth have profound adverse implications for the robustness of debt sustainability and for the durability of market access.”
http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2013/cr1393.pdfHowever, growth is expected to remain sluggish in 2013 and the outlook for gradual recovery over the medium term remains highly uncertain. Recent indicators appear consistent with previous projections for growth on the order of 1 percent in 2013, as the decline in domestic demand is slowing and exports are expected to firm modestly. With public and private debts still high, and the financial system facing weak profitability and providing limited credit, there are significant hurdles to achieving the growth in domestic demand needed to drive a stronger recovery and job creation from 2014 onwards. Continued weak growth would likely erode confidence and potentially undermine market access as a recovery is critical to putting Ireland‘s debt on a downward path.
This is somewhat at odds with the information coming from the Government. Leaving the "bailout" at the end of this year is dependent on growth. How can we have growth or increase it as predicted, when we are increasing taxes and stealth taxes.... ?