NUIG Economics Professor Alan Ahearne has cautioned against election promises made by politicians and suggested the Government would be better served "keeping their powder dry" for now. 

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Mr Ahearne addressed conflicting reports on the health of the world economy and noted that "storm clouds are gathering over the global economy".

He added that the world economy is at risk for what he termed a "hard landing" while there is the possibility of "the mother of all financial crisis coming from China".

Difficulties in the Chinese economy would have major implications worldwide as China has been driving the global economy in recent years.

As Ireland is a small open economy, it is affected by the global economy and therefore politicians' promises to lower taxes and increase spending may be foolhardy. 

Mr Ahearne said that, fiscally, the country needs resilience in the public finances and, he feels, that is not achieved that by reducing taxes and hiking spending when times are deemed to be "good".  

He said: "When you look at some of the election promises, they are talking of loosening fiscal policy, reducing taxes and increasing spending beyond what is prudent when the economy is growing.  

"It's best to keep the powder dry and use those measures if the global economy and the Irish economy turns down."