No decision on post-bailout credit line - Noonan

Friday 18 October 2013 22.27
Michael Noonan said Ireland would not enter a credit agreement with onerous conditions
Michael Noonan said Ireland would not enter a credit agreement with onerous conditions

The Minister for Finance has said no decisions have been taken about whether or not to apply for a post-bailout credit line from the EU or IMF.

Michael Noonan will meet the top Troika officials next week to discuss the issue of precautionary loans.

Speaking at an economics conference in Limerick Minister Noonan said that on the face of it Ireland does not need a precautionary credit line.

He said the country wants to exit the bailout without the market putting a risk premium on our interest rates.

“You don’t want Ireland to have to pay more on the markets," he said.

Minister Noonan added that all the risk factors to the Irish economic situation were now external, such as the war in Syria causing a spike in oil prices, or a new banking shock in another EU state.

The minister said in the event that a precautionary line of credit was issued, it would only be used as a backstop. He said Ireland would not enter into a situation with onerous conditions.

Earlier Minister Noonan said he plans to stand for re-election to the Dáil in 2016.

Minister signals pension row

The minister hinted that a row with the pension industry may lie behind the decision to extend the levy on pensions in the Budget, despite assurances last year it would be scrapped.

Michael Noonan said he had fulfilled his side of the bargain but the industry had not delivered on its side.

He declined to say what that agreement related to.

"We're being recorded publicly here, but they know and I know and if they want to come and talk to me we'll talk," he said.

It is believed that as part of a complex formula to limit tax-free pension contributions, the industry had suggested the Government would gain a certain amount of revenue.

However, so far this year the revenue is far below that level, prompting the Government to continue with the levy.