Thursday, June 22, 2006

Ahern predicts Irish GDP growth of 4.8% in 2006


Ireland's economy is expected to grow by around 4.8% this year, more than double the growth forecast for the euro area as a whole, Taoiseach Bertie Ahern said today.

The Taoiseach made his comments at the opening of a new Intel facility in Leixlip, Co Kildare.

He said he expected the country's gross domestic product (GDP) to grow by some 4.8% this year, slightly above the 4.7% growth recorded in early estimates for 2005.

In March, Finance Minister Brian Cowen said he expected Ireland's GDP to grow by around 4.7% this year. Latest GDP growth estimates for the euro zone this year are around 2.1%.

Ahern said Intel's commitment to opening a new facility showed that Ireland - which some economists warn risks losing its competitive edge as prices and wages, rise above those of its peers - was still a good place for business.

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