The Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan has said opposition parties have agreed a timeframe for the passing of the Finance Bill.

The minister said the Seanad would sit until Saturday in order to process the bill.

The Dáil will pass the Finance Bill on Thursday, and the Seanad will then consider it on Friday and Saturday.

The Dáil will be on standby to consider any recommendations from the Seanad on Saturday evening.

If the Dáil is not dissolved before then, it will consider confidence motions in the Government on the following Tuesday.

Labour Party Finance spokesperson Joan Burton said it was extremely likely that the General Election would be held on February 25.

Ms Burton also said that the Green Party had agreed that it would support a motion of no confidence if the Dail was not disolved tomorrow week.

Earlier, the European Commission said it was important for Ireland's credibility and stability that the Finance Bill is passed by the Dáil soon.

At a briefing in Brussels today, a spokesman for EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn described the Bill as 'crucial' to ensuring the 2011 budget is implemented, as agreed under the EU-IMF deal.

Amadeu Altafaj also noted there was a large consensus among political parties in Ireland that the Finance Bill should be passed.

Mr Altafaj declined to be drawn further on the matter, stating the Commission did not want to be drawn on what was ultimately a process of domestic political negotiation.

The meeting between the Minister for Finance and the opposition party finance spokespeople was held after the Green Party announced it was leaving Government yesterday.