The French finance minister has said he fully supports Ireland's efforts to reach a deal on banking debt.

Pierre Moscovici was in Dublin for talks with Minister for Finance Michael Noonan and Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin ahead of next week's Ecofin council in Brussels.

Mr Moscovici said that France is supportive of the Government's efforts to get a better economic situation and to get out of the EU/IMF programme.

He added that he is very supportive of any agreement that can be reached.

"I am confident those efforts will be successful and I trust Ireland will be the first country to get out of the programme," he stated after today's meeting.

Mr Moscovici also said stability in the euro zone is a key factor in growth as it affects confidence, especially of foreign investors.

He said the right balance between financial stability, which is absolutely necessary, and policies that can boost growth have to be debated.

The French minister also said there was no tension between Ireland and France on the matter of Corporation Tax, adding that the issue was not even mentioned during today's meeting.

Mr Moscovici said that Europe must acknowledge that countries around the region face different situations as they try to balance cutting deficits and sustaining growth. He stressed that France must stick to its plan to reduce its public deficit.

After today's meeting, the three ministers said they agreed that the return of growth must be put at the heart of the Europe's priorities in the coming months.

They also said they shared the goal of completing the implementation of the EU banking union as soon as possible and agreed to make progress on the economic and taxation agenda during Ireland's presidency of the European Union over the next six months.