Troika has questions to answer - Fitzgerald


Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald said today the EU-IMF troika has questions to answer about how an Irish budgetary paper was release to the German parliament.

Ms Fitzgerald said that the leaking was not an embarrassment for the Government and that the VAT increases mentioned in the paper had already been disclosed by Minister for Finance Michael Noonan in his medium term outlook earlier this year.

"There are questions for the troika to explain and to answer about how this actually happened," she said. "It's not an embarrassment for the Government, there are many discussions going on with the troika, a lot of papers are exchanged. No budget decisions have been made yet."

Sinn Féin's call this morning for the papers to be made public was discounted by Ms Fitzgerald as unrealistic. The party’s finance spokesman Pearse Doherty said the incident was “deeply embarrassing” for the Government.

"When Minister Noonan published his medium term document this was laid before the Irish people already. A lot of documents are exchanged, there are many discussions between the Department of Finance and the troika, it is not realistic to talk about publishing all of them."

The Government have given the Irish people a lot of information already, said Ms Fitzgerald, who described the budgetary process so far as very transparent.

Ms Fitzgerald was speaking prior to the launch of Dáil na nÓg, the national youth parliament for young people aged between 12 and 17. The event takes place throughout the day today in Croke Park and features some 200 young delegates from around the country.