Olli Rehn: ‘it is likely unfortunately to imply tax increases’

I’d wait for the detail, Brian, before declaring anything ‘safe’.  RTÉ reports the latest comments from European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs, Olli Rehn, on Ireland’s bail-out application.  From the RTÉ report

European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs Olli Rehn has reiterated that Ireland would no longer be a low tax economy.

When asked in an interview with RTÉ News if the corporate tax rate was now off the table for good, Mr Rehn said that by Ireland ceasing to be a low tax country it did not imply specific measures to be taken, but ‘it is likely unfortunately to imply tax increases’.

Mr Rehn said that has said there will be conditions attached to the EU/IMF rescue programme, even if the programme is based on the Government’s four-year budgetary plan.

Despite those comments the Irish Finance Minister, Brian Lenihan, maintains that

“I’m quite satisfied on the basis of the discussions to date that the Budget that will be presented to Dáil Eireann on 7th December will be our own Budget, nobody else’s Budget,” Mr Lenihan told RTE Radio.

Which will be technically true once they agree to the conditions…

All of which is worth considering in light of the Green Party’s desperate throw of the dice.

As the iol report notes

[Green Party leader] Mr Gormley said he wanted the current coalition Government to achieve three things before going to the public.

:: Produce a credible four-year plan to show they can make the Budgets balance by 2014, expected this Wednesday.

:: Deliver a Budget for 2011, due on December 7.

:: Secure IMF/EU funding respecting vital Irish interests and restoring stability to the euro, expected in several weeks.

Only after agreeing to all those conditions on the next government will the Green Party risk asking the public.