Minister for Finance announces cuts and other measures to reduce the budget overrun by £100 million.

At a news conference, Minister for Finance Albert Reynolds announced measures which he said will cut the budget overrun by over £100 million.

£10 million will be earned from extra dividends from semi-state companies. The remaining £90 million will be achieved through cutbacks, deferred payments, and underpayments on current projects.

The budget cutbacks will include £12 million from defence, £11.6 million from environment, £11.25 million from health, £10.2 million from social welfare, £10 million from administrative costs and travel, and £6.2 million from education.

Speaking about the cuts, Albert Reynolds said that the least well-off in society would not have to carry the burden of the cuts.

Our approach was that every department should contribute.

Economist Colm McCarty believes the minister did not go far enough and says that in reality there are not enough expenditure cuts.

Albert Reynolds said that today’s announcement was just the start and that if the economy did not pick up, additional cuts would have to be made. The government may have to renegotiate spending commitments under the Programme for Economic Progress. The minister also said that as things stand, there would be no room for income tax cuts in 1992.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 19 July 1991. The reporter is Michael Ronayne.