Fine Gael has defended its economic record in government saying that there are now more people at work than ever before.

Paschal Donohoe said now is not the time to "take a punt on our future".

Mr Donohoe claimed that under a Fine Gael government, the average worker will benefit from tax cuts amounting to just under €3,000 a year.

At the launch of the party's economic and tax plans, Fine Gael claimed a future Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin coalition would present "a clear and present danger to the economy".

Fine Gael also claimed that its election tax plan will "benefit the many, not the few".

Mr Donohoe said the party's tax plan will benefit more than a million people to ensure the higher rate is not paid on average earnings.

The party also announced that it would exempt workers earning €20,000 and bellow from USC.

Simon Coveney said the election is all still to play for but admitted that it is a very tight contest.

Mr Coveney said that his party was being straight, honest, and blunt with the electorate as opposed to other parties who are promising things that are undeliverable.