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Although Ireland is similar to other PIIGS countries in having serious financial problems, it is quite different in the sense that - despite everything - we are a net exporter and expect exports to continue to grow rapidly in the next few years.  Our industrial/ post industrial base was very significantly modernised in the Tiger years so that we have most of the worlds leading IT and pharmaceutical companies locating significant operations here.  The relatively high tech and advanced nature of these facilities has allowed them to remain competitive despite our cost base getting out of line more generally.

The reliance on Oil/gas for electricity is partly due to the gas finds off our coast but there is a national target to go 30& renewables by 2020 which seems to be being met ahead of schedule.  Our relatively sparse population density doesn't lend itself to rail although it is regrettable we actually reduced rail freight in recent years.  Undoubtedly high Oil prices have a disproportionate effect on countries like Ireland because of our high Oil/gas and road dependency.  However this effect is dwarfed by the scale of the problems created by our banking sector induced property bubble.

notes from no w here

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Apr 8th, 2010 at 09:25:15 AM EST

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