Austrian President Dr Heinz Fischer has predicted that now that the financial crisis is behind Ireland, the country's trade levels will improve.

Speaking on Morning Edition, Dr Fischer said that if Ireland has the money for investment, business people will come back to Ireland and invest here.

He said that business optimism is returning and business people from Europe - and beyond - will look at Ireland and say that it is safe to take a risk on investing here. He describes this as a very healthy situation for Ireland.

When asked whether the Government should continue with austerity measures in next week's Budget, he said that he did not want to influence the country's decision makers and said the matter is ultimately one for the Government.

But he said the figures shown to him by Taoiseach Enda Kenny at today's Irish Austrian Business Forum were very promising. 

The Austrian President said that Austria's growth rate is far from the 4.7% predicted recently by the Department of Finance or the 6.1% rate pencilled in by Ibec today. But he added that he was proud to say that Austria's unemployment is the lowest in the euro zone.