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It is essential for Ireland to pass budget – Rehn

The commissioner has told Irish MEPs that “stability is important”.

European Commissioner for the Economy Olli Rehn
European Commissioner for the Economy Olli Rehn
Image: Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP/Press Association Images

Updated at 12.50am

EU ECONOMIC AFFAIRS Commissioner Olli Rehn has told Irish MEPs at a confidential meeting in Strasbourg today that it essential to pass the budget.

Each day that Ireland delayed passing the budget would invite greater uncertainty, he said.

Rehn also stressed the importance of political stability, saying:

Stability is important. We don’t have a position on the domestic democratic politics of Ireland but it is essential that the budget will be adopted in time and we will be able to conclude the negotiations on the EU-IMF programme in time.

The four-year economic plan is due to be presented on Monday, and will be voted on on 7 December.

Socialist MEP Joe Higgins walked out of the meeting after just a few minutes. Higgins complained that the information being discussed was being shared on the basis of confidentiality – and that he felt he would be a betrayal not to divulge the information publicly.

He said it was unacceptable that the commissioner gave MEPs the choice between a briefing, akin to what might be given to the media, or secret meetings.

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