Minister for Communications Pat Rabbitte has said it is important that the Government meets its deficit target of 3% by 2015.

However, the minister said he believed the Government should not necessarily be confined to making €3.1 billion in savings in October's Budget as pressed for by the EU/IMF Troika.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Mr Rabbitte said that while it was too early to put a figure on it, there would be some manoeuvrability in the Budget.

He said: "Each year we have been moderately ahead of target. We are ahead of target this year.

"All I'm saying is that the target shouldn't change, it should not be converted from a deficit percentage to an arbitrary amount of money.

"It is too early to say what the figures are going to be on Budget day, what the difference will be in taking out €3.1bn and achieving 5.1% deficit by the end of next year.

"It is too early to say what manoeuvrability we will have, but we will have some manoeuvrability."