IMF has approved €22.5bn assistance

Thursday 16 December 2010 22.25
IMF - Had postponed the meeting awaiting the Dáil vote
IMF - Had postponed the meeting awaiting the Dáil vote

The IMF has approved the €22.5bn financial assistance programme for Ireland.

The board of the IMF met in Washington today and approved the bailout.

The decision had been postponed from last week to allow for the Dáil vote.

Speaking on RTÉ's Six-One News tonight, Ajai Chopra, Deputy Director of the IMF's European Department and head of the IMF's mission to Ireland, said the IMF would be monitoring Irish Government policies to ensure that certain targets were met.

If targets are not met he said the fund will examine why not and whether adjustments to the deal are needed.

He said the IMF could not be 'completely rigid' and that policies could be adapted as long as they were consistent with the overall targets of the plan.

Asked about the effect of a change of Government, Mr Chopra said different parties would have different priorities and there was always room for discussion.

But Mr Chopra said that there is agreement across the political spectrum that Ireland needs to achieve fiscal stability.

On the 5.8% interest rate the country is paying for the EU/IMF bailout Mr Chopra said the markets would lend at much higher rates.

In relation to others shouldering bank debt along with the tax payer he said the legislation passed provided scope to do further 'liability management exercises' and he would expect that will be done in due course.