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Friday, April 18, 2014
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Ireland faces more austerity as bailout era ends
DUBLIN—Ireland’s three-year bailout ordeal ends this weekend, a victory in its battle against bankruptcy. But while the government is ready to finance itself without aid, the Irish can’t yet escape what has become Europe’s longest-running austerity programme.
The Irish faced ruin in 2010, when the runaway cost of a bank-bailout programme begun two years earlier destroyed the country’s ability to borrow at affordable rates. To the rescue came fellow European nations and the International Monetary Fund with a three-year loan package worth 67.5 billion euros (US$93 billion). The last of those funds arrived in Ireland’s state coffers this week.
Today, Prime Minister Enda Kenny will address the nation on live TV to salute the financial rebound that has eluded the eurozone’s other bailout recipients Greece, Portugal and Cyprus.
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