EU Summit presents one-off opportunity for Ireland to improve its position

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Public Expenditure Michael McGrath TD has called on the Taoiseach and the Minister for Finance to ensure that Ireland and the difficulties facing the country are at the core of Thursday’s emergency EU summit. 

Deputy McGrath said ‘Ireland must not be a passenger at this Thursday’s summit. This is the moment when Europe appears to be willing to make the big decisions, and our Government must ensure that the golden opportunity to improve our position is firmly seized.

‘Last week’s Eurogroup statement on reduced interest rates, longer maturity of loans and the possibility of debt buy-back at a discount, as well as the suggestion of private creditor involvement all open up real possibilities for Ireland.

‘It is essential that a comprehensive solution to the Eurozone debt crisis emerges from the meeting. While the Greek crisis will inevitably be the headline focus of the summit, it is critical that the needs of other highly indebted Eurozone countries such as Ireland are also kept to the fore.

‘Europe has been taken to the edge of a precipice, and the European leaders simply have to deliver a comprehensive solution package on this occasion. If the European leaders make decisions that finally draw a line under this crisis, then the summit presents a one-off opportunity for Ireland to secure real improvements to its financial position.

‘Ireland’s strict adherence to the terms of the existing bailout agreement with the EU / IMF is not justification for excluding Ireland from any package designed to benefit Greece. The Taoiseach needs to make it very clear at the outset of the summit on Thursday that Ireland must benefit from any concessions being made to Greece.