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Dublin: 16 °C Friday 31 October, 2014

Troika to deliver verdict on bailout as programme reaches halfway point

Officials from the EC, IMF and ECB are expected to give Ireland the thumbs up on its bailout.

ECB economist Klaus Masuch, Director of Economic and Financial Affairs at the EC Istvan Szekely and IMF's Ajai Chopra in Dublin last week.
ECB economist Klaus Masuch, Director of Economic and Financial Affairs at the EC Istvan Szekely and IMF's Ajai Chopra in Dublin last week.
Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

OFFICIALS FROM THE Troika will today deliver their latest verdict on the progress of Ireland’s bailout as the country reaches the halfway point in its assistance programme.

Representatives from the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank have been in the country for just over a week and are widely expected to deliver a positive review of Ireland’s progress.

If so, then the next tranche of the €67.5 billion funding programme can be paid out, meaning some 70 per cent of the funds will already have been released.

The Troika have been reviewing the government’s Pathways to Work programme as well as wider reforms of the country’s banking sector. There could also be an announcement on restructuring plans for Permanent TSB bank.

Economic growth figures are also expected to be examined with suggestions that the growth figures off which the government is working are too optimistic.

In its latest quarterly report on Ireland’s financial outlook, the IMF said that the country’s “economy faces greater external and domestic challenges than envisaged at the outset of the programme”.

Finance Minister Michael Noonan and the Public Expenditure and Reform Minister Brendan Howlin will give their own briefing on the programme to the media at midday.

Unlike on previous visits, the Troika officials are not expected to give a press confernece.

During their visit they have also declined to meet with opposition parties, citing the forthcoming referendum. “It would not be the appropriate thing to do,” an ECB official told TheJournal.ie on the possibility of meeting with opposition politicians.

Read: Troika discouraged from opposition meetings by May referendum, says ECB

Photos: The troika are back in town

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