Sinn Fein Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD, responding to the release of the annual Stability Programme Update, has said the figures in the update prove that the Government has made the economy worse as a result of its economic policies. He said the update recommitted the Government to that same policy of austerity.
Deputy Doherty said:
“This time last year when the Government published its Stability Programme update it tried to convince us that that economy would grow faster; that our deficit would reduce quicker; and that our debt to GDP would decline faster than this update claims today.
“None of this materialised under the Government’s continuing policies of austerity.
“Yet the Government recommits itself in this document to tax and cut another €2 billion from the economy at the end of the year in Budget 2015. We know that under this Government, that means more austerity for the most vulnerable, such as through the introduction of water charges.
“Buried deep in this document is confirmation also that the Government plans to continue starving public services of funding over the next four years. With a growing population, this means further cuts in real terms.
“There are clearly some positive signs in some sectors of the economy. But there are many that are left behind and the Government doesn’t take account of the hundreds of thousands of people who’ve emigrated.
“The Government needs to change its austerity approach which is making targets harder to meet and causing untold damage to wider society. Budget 2015 has to give people something back, or all this talk of recovery will mean very little for the vast majority of people.”