Posts Tagged ‘ International Monetary Fund ’

Senior Economist Warns Ireland “Should Be Praying” for Second Bailout

The head of Economics at Dublin City University today claimed that a second bailout in inevitable for Ireland and insisted we “should be praying” that the European Union, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank would be willing to facilitate it.

Professor Tony Foley made the comments when speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland radio programme. He said such an offer would be preferable to the Government’s current proposal of borrowing approximately €12 billion on international financial markets next year as this would invariably lead to crippling interest rates as the country attempts to repay its massive debt – estimated to reach €206 billion by 2015.

Professor Foley’s comments come less than 24 hours after Citigroup economist Willem Buiter stated that Ireland should negotiate a ‘standby’ second bailout in the event we are unable to return to the markets.

European Commissioner Olli Rehn’s spokesman, Amadeu Altafaj, has labelled such speculation as unhelpful given that the first programme was delivering and that Ireland had enjoyed positive growth and banking sector reform in 2011.

In another blow to the Irish economy, a new Goodbody Stockbrokers report has predicted further protracted growth in 2012 and claimed Ireland will not achieve the 3% of gross domestic product deficit target by 2015.

Goodbody chief economist Dermot O’Leary said he expects the country’s GDP ratio to rise to 124% in 2014 and has revised down GDP growth estimates to 0.7% for this year from 1.2%.  GNP, excluding multinationals, and domestic demand will fall by 0.8% and 2.6% respectively.

Officials from the EU, IMF and ECB are in Dublin today, undertaking their fifth review of the €67.5bn loan programme. The talks are being headed by the IMF’s Ajai Chopra. The troika will review figures for 2011 and establish targets for the Government and the economy over the coming months.

Mr Chopra said, “A restructuring of the circa €30 billion in promissory notes (in relation to Anglo) provides an opportunity to reduce debt to a more sustainable level without the difficulties that Greece is currently experiencing with private sector involvement.” He added, “Another important issue is the speed at which the banking system is deleveraging.”

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny will meet British Prime Minister David Cameron in Downing Street on Thursday to discuss the ongoing debt crisis.

Occupy Dame Street:Who We Are

#OccupyDameStreet is a people’s movement, which stands in solidarity with and is inspired by nearly 1000 sister occupations in the evolving global movement initiated by the people of Iceland, Greece, Spain, and Tunisia. We use tactics of non-violence akin to the scenes of peaceful resistance in Tahrir Square and Wall Street. This is a diverse people’s initiative, unaffiliated with any political parties. We are the 99%. We stand together against political and economic corruption. We stand for equality and social justice. This is a “leaderless resistance movement” with people of many nationalities, backgrounds, genders and political persuasions.

 We say to the people of Ireland: if you have ever looked for an opportunity to engage in realistic change, this is the platform. Now is the time when the spirit of the revolt is spreading to other major cities and financial districts around the world. It is the duty of everyone to stand together against the endless greed and corruption on which our financial system is based. 

We reject the complete control of the European Central Bank (ECB) in dictating our economic policy. Our demand is that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) stay out of our affairs. We do not want their influence or control. Our demand is that the private bank debt that has been socialised and burdened upon the population of our country who had nothing to do with it be lifted. We will not pay and let our children and their children pay for this crisis that private banks and bondholders have caused. It is their problem, not ours. Our demand is that the oil and gas reserves off our coast that were criminally handed away to private corporations be returned to sovereign control. Our demand is for real, participatory democracy – where the people’s interests come first, where the people decide what happens. 

We do not claim to have a complete list of solutions. We believe, however, that the process is just beginning. The more participation we can build, the more power our decisions will carry. We invite any person to join us, but we ask that they leave their political party at the door.


Strauss-Khan Denied Bail

A New York judge has remanded International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn in custody on charges that he sexually assaulted a hotel maid.

Strauss-Kahn was ‘disappointed’ a court denied him bail on sexual assault charges, but his lawyer insisted that the IMF chief would mount a vigorous defense, saying ‘this battle has just begun.’

‘We are obviously disappointed by the court decision,’ lawyer Benjamin Brafman told reporters after the judge denied the French dignitary bail despite his defense team’s offer to put up $1 million in cash and surrender all his travel documents.

Judge Melissa Jackson said Strauss-Kahn should be remanded because he was ‘a flight risk’ after being charged on Saturday with sexual assault and attempted rape of a maid at a luxury hotel in Manhattan. His arrest was met by great surprise and was highly praised in ome quarters as the American authorities stooped on one of the world`s most influential figures.

Mr Strauss-Kahn is due to reappear in court on Friday.

Prosecutors said they were concerned that Mr Strauss-Kahn might flee to France if released. Defence lawyers said Mr Strauss-Kahn denied the charges against him.

Mr Strauss-Kahn was pulled off a Paris-bound plane on Saturday and charged with a criminal sexual act, attempted rape and unlawful imprisonment in a scandal that appears to have all but ended his hopes of running for president of France.

His position within the Washington based IMF remains untouched at present however it is widely believed this case may lead to his downfall.

Mr Strauss-Kahn missed an important meeting in Brussels on Monday where the European Union unanimously voted in support of the €80 million bailout deal for Portugal.

Atrocity of `74 remembered in 2011, or is it?

The much publicised visit of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth the second will commence tomorrow, and in doing so it will see the first visit to Ireland by a British monarch since the country earned it’s independence in 1921. 

The newly elected government have opted to bring over the Queen and US President Barack Obama a week later to show the world that Ireland is open for business and that the country continues to be the land of ten thousand welcomes. 

The visit of Elizabeth Windsor has virtually locked down the entire region in and around Dublin City centre with severe traffic restrictions now in place and many places been closed off to the public. If last month’s Royal Wedding between Kate Middleton and Prince William was to show a new view of the royals as been closer to the people, then this visit totally contradicts that. Not one well wisher (and there are many) will be allowed a sniff of the very air the Queen breathes.

 There are many that will protest this visit of the British Monarch and rightly so. There are both right and wrong reasons for her making this trip along with British Prime Minister David Cameron. 

Beginning with the positive aspect of this historical visit, it has endeared our nation to the world. A nation, who fought for its freedom from its noisy neighbours and a nation that is now willing to move on and forget the violent turmoil of the past. Ireland view England as our greatest trade partners and Taoiseach Enda Kenny has continually labelled Ireland as open for business. The view of this visit has been largely positive by all corners of Irish society with a few exceptions. The trip may well enhance our business prospects with our friends from across the Irish sea, but perhaps the trip will do more bad than good.

 Possible terror on our streets, restricted movement for everybody, not too mention evoking terrible memories for many. 

The story of Ireland in the early part of the 1900s was best told through the tales of uprising and civil war, a battle for freedom and an identity of our own. Fast forward to 2011 and the story of Ireland is radically different. The Emerald Isle has gone from boom to bust in the space of ten years and now find’s itself subject to large influence by the International Monetary Fund and some of Europe’s bigger nations. Indeed we borrowed from Britain.

 With a huge loan of almost €80 billion to be paid back for our bailout, why, in these gloomy economic times, are we spending €30 million on the visit of the Queen and Obama when some sectors of our society are roaring out for investment. Our health system is a joke. Our unemployment level is a joke. Our leadership has, is and seemingly always will be a joke.

 Yes, tight security is essential owing to the large threat posed by dissident forces operating on this island but €30 million has essentially been thrown down the drain to have a British monarch parade on these shores. This is a symbolic trip but at this time Ireland needs more than this, much more. 

How significant is this trip? A lot of people have mentioned that this trip is highly significant for everyone involved with the country however few have spoken about it’s timing. 

May 17th 1974. Simultaneous bombings rip through Dublin and Monaghan leading to the death of 33 innocent civilians and wounding up to 300 more. It is alleged that the British government under the guidance of the Queen played a role in these bombings along with the Ulster Volunteer Force. 

What thought did the leaders of this country give to those 33 civilians who died that day when they invited the Queen over on the 37th anniversary of the attacks? Why dance on the graves of those innocent victims of the car bombing atrocities? Why not wait for a better time? Why not wait until the recession is over? 

No protests in Dublin will be allowed to go ahead while the Queen is here with Gardaì enforcing strict measures against potential protesters. No justice has ever been brought for the dead and the British government continue to withhold key files that the victim’s families so desperately crave. 

Those families have written a letter to the Queen and Cameron in an attempt for them to end the secrecy but will their letter ever get into the hands of the leading British figures?