Lately, global news has been dominated by the European debt crisis. This news has been predominately negative and I personally have been looking forward to hearing something positive for a change. Ireland has recently been experiencing moderate economic growth and the budget deficit has since been declining. Germany and France have commended Ireland for making economic strides, and believe that this nation is not far from being out of the crisis.
Ireland is again attracting foreign investment and several positive economic indicators have emerged. Exports are up 5.4% from last year and the nation’s GDP is continuing to grow. New information technology companies are arriving and are looking to hire. Tethras is an Irish company that develops mobile applications for smartphones and is looking to double its labor force in the next year and a half. Established companies like Facebook and LinkedIn are finding success in Ireland along with smaller companies like Tethras.
Despite economic growth, many ordinary Irish citizens feel that they are carrying the burden of the crisis. Public workers have seen pay cuts of 20% and taxes on housing and water have also risen. Also spending cuts will occur in 2012 and will affect health care, social protections, and child benefits. These taxes and pay cuts are negatively affecting the people who can least afford them and many are choosing to leave Ireland. In this year alone, 40,000 have left Ireland in search of a more promising future.
Ireland may not be out of the European financial crisis completely, but has recently been excelling in many economic aspects. Hopefully this success will continue, but not at the expense of those citizens who can least afford it.