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Budget Statement 2013

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Snippet Contents:

-----and all future officeholders.
Summary
In total, spending adjustments designed to yield more than €15 billion have been implemented during this crisis. This represents the vast bulk of the required total adjustment.
The scale of this adjustment should not be underestimated, nor do we underestimate the difficulties this has caused for many of our citizens. As reliable economic commentaries from the ESRI to the European Commission and the OECD have indicated, we have sought to do so in a manner consistent with fairness. In reducing the deficit, we are endeavouring to ensure we protect the vulnerable in our society. Those who can contribute more should and will do so.
This year’s general Government deficit is estimated at just under €13.5 billion, or 8.2% of GDP. This is within the 8.6% of GDP limit set by ECOFIN in December 2010. We must continue to meet our fiscal targets and to reach a deficit of below 3% by 2015.
The next comprehensive review of expenditure will commence in 2013, and will be central to identifying additional cost savings and future efficiencies. The Croke Park agreement will continue to enable reforms and to extract costs from the public service.
Conclusion
As a Government, this is our second budget. The economy we inherited had experienced a catastrophic shock. When I took office last year, I could not be certain that we would, as a nation, make it through this crisis.