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News : Irish Economy Last Updated: Nov 28, 2010 - 7:26:53 PM


EU finance ministers meet in Brussels to approve expected €85bn EU-IMF bailout deal for Ireland
By Michael Hennigan, Founder and Editor of Finfacts
Nov 28, 2010 - 1:32:33 PM

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International Monetary Fund 's Ajai Chopra, Deputy Director, European Department, is the IMF's head of mission to Ireland.

EU finance ministers are meeting in Brussels Sunday afternoon to approve an expected €85bn EU-IMF bailout deal for Ireland.

Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan is in Brussels to finalise the terms of a rescue package and a meeting of the Eurogroup, comprising finance ministers of the Eurozone, is scheduled to be followed by a meeting of finance ministers from all 27 EU member states.

It's reported that German and French leaders Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy, European Central Bank president Jean-Claude Trichet, European Council president Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission president José Manuel Barroso held telephone conversations on the package earlier today.

Olli Rehn, the European commissioner for economic and monetary affairs, said in remarks to reporters in Brussels: “We have a serious situation and we have to do our utmost to protect the foundations of the economic recovery and employment and today we shall make a very important decisions to that effect.”

Irish government officials told the Financial Times that the €85bn loan, from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and members of the European Union, could extend to as much as nine years, compared with the three-year loan provided to Greece.

The rescue package is expected to include about €50bn in fiscal support over the next three years before Ireland returns to the international debt markets and €35bn in capital for the banks.

The Cabinet met on Saturday evening for a briefing, which included an update from the Governor of the Central Bank Patrick Honohan on the talks with the officials from the IMF, European Commission and the European Central Bank.

The Government has this afternoon issued a statement on the current state of play in negotiations for financial aid with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund. Here is the full, short statement:

"The negotiations which have been underway with representatives of the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF are concluding today. The Government met last night and were briefed on the progress which had been made.

The Government decided to proceed to conclude a Programme on that basis and authorised the Minister for Finance to finalise the negotiations at a meeting of the EU Finance Ministers in Brussels this afternoon.

It is expected that the Programme for assistance to Ireland will be adopted at this Ministerial meeting. It is anticipated on that basis that details of the agreement will be published later this afternoon."

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