Business group Ibec has said the economy will grow by close to 3% next year, driven by a rebound in the domestic economy and a pickup in exports.
Ibec has also called on the Government to deliver an ambitious post-bailout growth and reform strategy.
Ahead of the Government’s medium-term economic plan, Ibec has called for strict adherence to fiscal rules that will require more efficiency and reform in public sector spending.
Among other things, it wants income tax cuts in both marginal rates and bands, a maximum tax burden of 37% of GNP and all existing public servants to have their final pension based on career average earnings.
It has also called for more infrastructure to be delivered, an income-related higher education loan scheme, money for reforms to the school curriculum and an employer-led apprenticeship scheme.
In its economic outlook, it says it expects growth of 2.8% next year, with further employment growth of 2%, following an estimated 2.5% growth in jobs this year.
It says investment will rise by 15% next year, after a 10% gain this year.
Tanáiste Eamon Gilmore has described the latest Ibec growth figures as “very encouraging”.
Speaking as he arrived for a meeting of EU foreign ministers, Mr Gilmore said the rate of growth would have a clear impact on the budgetary position towards the end of next year.
“It’s very encouraging. The Government has projected growth of 2% next year. It is very encouraging that the largest business organisation in the country is now projecting a rate of growth which is higher than that. I assume that is based on their knowledge of what is happening on the ground in Irish industry and in Irish business,” he said.
McGrath seeks more detail from Kenny on jobs plans
Commenting on Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s address to the nation to mark Ireland’s exit from the bailout, Fianna Fáil’s finance spokesman this morning said he would have liked more detail on how the Government intends to secure economic recovery.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Michael McGrath said he wanted to hear more from the Taoiseach in relation to creating jobs in the short term.
He said: “The one specific item that the Taoiseach did allude to was that there would be two million people at work by 2020. As of today, we have 1.9 million people at work, so he’s projecting an increase of 100,000 people over the next seven years.
“Now we have over 400,000 still on the live register, so by the Taoiseach’s own numbers that would still leave about 300,000 people on the live register in seven years time.”