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Note this is currency reserves as a multiple of net energy imports, not as a fraction of GDP. In absolute terms, Ireland has $1bn in reserves which is not small potatoes.

Question: given this, would it make more sense to change the second chart to have both axes as a fraction of GDP?

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by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 27th, 2008 at 07:20:13 AM EST
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Not being an economist, I'm not clear on the significance of currency reserves in this discussion. Do we mean foreign currency reserves? Since joining the Euro, Ireland has had much less need of maintaining foreign currency reserves partly because it doesn't have its own currency to protect against speculation etc., and partly because much more of it's trade is within the Euro area.

If we are discussing "ability to pay" for oil imports, surely trade surpluses, budget deficits, national debt as % of GDP etc. are much more relevant measures?

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue May 27th, 2008 at 07:13:38 PM EST
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