Irish bond sale sign of confidence, says Enda Kenny

Taoiseach says fall in Irish bond yields ‘a further endorsement of progress made’

A fall in Irish bond yields to their lowest level in eight years is an indication of the economic progress being made by the State, Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said.

Speaking in the Qatari capital Doha after the sale of €3.75 billion in Irish bonds at a yield of 3.54 per cent, Mr Kenny said the development was a signal from the markets of “further confidence in Ireland” following the EU-IMF bailout exit last month.

"I am very pleased with [the sale] and I'd like to commend the National Treasury Management Agency for the way they've gone about their business in the last 12 months," he said.

The oversubscribed sale was notable given the fact the State was already in a position to fund itself to the end of the first quarter of next year, the Taoiseach added.

'Maintain momentum'


He said the news was "a further endorsement of the progress made by the people of Ireland, by the decisions taken by Government in exiting the programme and we move on to maintain our momentum, to grow our economy and to provide jobs".

Mr Kenny was in Qatar as part of an Enterprise Ireland trade mission to the Gulf region. He yesterday held talks with representatives of the state-backed Qatar Investment Authority, which he said would travel to Ireland in the coming months to examine opportunities in a number of areas of the economy.

'Ratings upgrade'

“The Qatar Investment Authority will lead a high-level delegation to Ireland to look at a range of opportunities not just dealing with the Irish Financial Services Centre or Islamic projects but also in respect of infrastructure for small and medium enterprises and access to credit,” he said.

Mr Kenny indicated he was hopeful Qatari investors would consider purchasing Irish bonds in the event of a ratings upgrade.

He also held a meeting with executives from Qatar Airways in the hope of encouraging the airline, which currently services some of its fleet in Dublin, to establish a direct route to the Irish capital.

Yesterday it was announced that engineering firm Kentz International Ireland was opening of a new branch in Doha. It is to offer services in the oil and gas and transportation and infrastructure markets.

Mobility solutions provider Díona Technologies also announced it had signed a partnership deal with Qatari-based IT firm MDS.

Steven Carroll

Steven Carroll

Steven Carroll is an Assistant News Editor with The Irish Times