Economists and Irish business leaders applauded Thursday's deal as much-needed relief for a country suffering nearly 15 percent unemployment, rising mortgage defaults and its biggest emigration wave since the 1980s.
"The deal is better than expected and will improve Ireland's debt sustainability and reduce our funding requirements over the coming years. The extended period of the new bonds will allow growth and inflation to reduce the real cost of servicing this debt over time," said Danny McCoy, director of the Irish Business and Employers Confederation, which represents 7,500 businesses in Ireland.
Karl Whelan, a Trinity College Dublin economist, said the surprisingly long terms of the new bonds gave Ireland "the best possible scenario for repayment."
"When you put payments off into the far future they should be easier to handle," he said, noting that the remaining €28 billion to pay represents a staggering 20 percent of Ireland's current GDP. "But in 30 years' time GDP will be higher and prices will have gone up, so that bill might represent just 5 percent of our GDP. In 30 years we could go out and borrow that money again and just roll it over. It really never gets paid back."
Kenny's announcement followed a dusk-to-dawn drama at Ireland's parliament as the government, hinting Wednesday night at a debt deal, summoned lawmakers for a midnight debate on a bill to liquidate IBRC immediately.
Noonan defended IBRC's overnight dismantling as necessary given the risk that private creditors of IBRC would have filed lawsuits Thursday seeking to lay claim to properties and blocking government plans.
He said the government had no choice after its plans to close IBRC, secretly drafted months ago as part of its backroom negotiations with ECB governors, were leaked to international news agencies Wednesday.
"Did you ever hear of a liquidation that was announced one day and not implemented for several days or weeks?" Noonan told lawmakers, many of whom were given just minutes to read the nearly 60-page bill.
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