• Germany's news in English
 

German FM: Be more like the hard-working Irish

Published: 26 Oct 2012 15:51 GMT+02:00

Speaking after talks in Berlin on Friday, Gilmore said: "We are determined to be the first country to successfully exit from such a programme and we are on our way to achieving that goal."

Ireland's EU-IMF bailout package worth 85 billion euros ($107 billion) is due to expire at the end of next year and the country hopes to regain full access to the financial markets at that point.

Both ministers also reaffirmed comments at the weekend made by their respective leaders that Ireland should be considered a special case when applying for banking aid from the eurozone's new bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM).

"Our economy returned to growth last year but we are carrying a very heavy burden of bank debt because our taxpayers were required to shoulder the full cost of the bank bailout," said Gilmore, who is also deputy prime minister.

"In view of these unique circumstances, we appreciate the commitment of Germany and our other EU partners to examine Ireland's special situation," he added.

For his part, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said that Ireland was "an excellent example that you can make it with discipline, with hard work and that you can work your way out of this debt crisis."

"We are full of respect for the Irish efforts. We are grateful for your efforts and your pro-European views and we admire the success story you are writing," added the minister.

Comments by German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a summit last week of EU leaders that countries could not benefit retroactively from bank recapitalisation from the ESM spooked many in Ireland.

To assuage these fears, Dublin and Berlin issued a joint statement over the weekend insisting that the country's banks were a "specific case," a position later echoed by France.

Merkel's spokesman said she would meet Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny on Thursday in Berlin to discuss the eurozone crisis.

Dublin argues it should still benefit from bank recapitalisation funds because, unlike in the case of Greece, private investors were not forced to take a hit on their bond holdings.

Ireland had to seek an EU-IMF bailout in late 2010 after government efforts to keep its banking sector afloat left it virtually bankrupt, forcing it to seek outside help in return for tough and unpopular austerity measures.

Direct bank recapitalisation is meant to prevent banking crises from turning into national debt crises when governments are forced to bail out their financial sectors.

Westerwelle declined to comment on earlier remarks by a senior member of Merkel's conservative CDU party, Norbert Barthle, who said an application to the ESM would entail a new bailout programme and new strings attached.

"I can only say that if you look at the decisions of the German government and at the decisions of the German Bundestag, you see there is a huge majority for a pro-European direction," he said.

AFP/The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

17:42 October 26, 2012 by IchBinKönig
Why stop at the Irish? It wouldn't be bad for the Germans to work as hard as the Turks, or the Greeks while their at it.
18:00 October 26, 2012 by quiller
I think with the different perspectives that exist between the EU, Germany/Finland/Holland, the EU Heads of State statement and the confusion over various statements. Irish and German governments running around like headless chickens calming one another, clarifying statements and markets. Have these people learnt nothing? Playing politics to their home audiences. The introduction and management of the Euro will have been seen by historians to be the biggest disaster faced by Europe since it's inception. The propping up of the banks by European governments - very often on a knee jerk response, will be seen to be disastrous. The banks should have been excoriated over their behaviour - lenders and borrowers. In many cases, they should have been let go to the wall. This week we have had the trial of a rogue broker in France - How come the rogue broker gets a trial while the rogue directors / regulators / managers are allowed to hold onto their jobs, bonuses, pensions?
19:16 October 26, 2012 by Englishted
Guido Westerwelle is a fool and our money are soon parted.

The Irish are not getting out of the bail out simply because their budget is 15 billion a year short of balancing .
19:23 October 26, 2012 by raandy
For his part, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said that Ireland was "an excellent example that you can make it with discipline, with hard work and that you can work your way out of this debt crisis."

I assume this statement was pointed at Greece and Spain, even though their situations are all different including their culture. Austerity and banking reform is a must but one shoe does not fit all.Hard work and discipline is a "work ethic", which is not universally practiced or accepted by all member states.
19:24 October 26, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
Thank you Ireland for being good little puppets. Here is a Jim'll fix it badge and your wish to meet Guido arranged.
20:04 October 26, 2012 by lgjhere
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
20:07 October 26, 2012 by Englishted
One more point to add to my earlier comment ,if as they say it is doing so well ,why are so many young people leaving just like in the past ?.
23:06 October 26, 2012 by lordkorner
Well I'm not living there so I can't be sure of what is going on in the little green Island. I am aware however that despite all the hardship that has befallen the people there ,they have knuckled down and got on with it. I have heard no reports of Riots or unrest on the streets of Dublin,unlike Athens and Madrid.
08:53 October 27, 2012 by Englishted
@ lordkorner

Is that a good or bad thing?

Docile enough to take anything in the hope you can remain in the E.U. .
13:43 October 27, 2012 by Navigator_B
The reality is that Ireland is an economic disaster zone with with huge numbers emigrating and those who remain burdened with debts that are simply unsustainable. 

It's not just the huge personal debts (like mortgages on negative equity properties) that are getting harder and harder to pay off because of tax rises. There's also the debts that were run up by private banks and and speculators that the taxpayers are now forced to pay off with those same tax rises as well as with cutbacks in public spending. 
11:43 October 28, 2012 by monicker
I am living in Ireland and I am working. The perception of the EU in Ireland is very negative. There are problems down the line which have yet to flare up. The main problem is that majority of homeowners cannot afford their mortgages. Furthermore, the unemployment is relatively low because of emigration and the unemployed entering full time education. The two biggest gripes are that all countries do not have equal say in Europe. Germany dictates to everyone and the Irish taxpayer are paying international investors for failed investments in banks that are being winded down. These investors include German and French banks, as they do in Greece.
19:37 October 28, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
Exactly as it is monicker. The only problem with the Irish is they are not causing enough trouble as the Greeks are. They should be shouting foul play from the top of the Spire in Dublin after what their own government and the German government has imposed on them. The suffering is widespread and all to keep the top 1% afloat in a sea of champagne.
09:04 October 29, 2012 by strahlungsamt
Of course Ireland is doing the right thing. It's where German companies go to avoid paying German corporate tax. Meanwhile, social benefits, schools, hospitals and public services of all kinds are being cut left, right and center and the young population is emigrating to Australia.

Ayn Rand would be proud of the Irish. Collins and DeValera are turning in their graves.
Today's headlines
School hotpants ban sparks online debate
Photo: DPA

School hotpants ban sparks online debate

A school's decision to ban hot pants for girls during the July heatwave has sparked anger online, with feminist activists decrying the decision as sexist. READ  

Greece crisis
Merkel to meet Tsipras at Tuesday summit
Over 60 percent of Greeks voted 'No' in the referendum. Photo: DPA

Merkel to meet Tsipras at Tuesday summit

UPDATE: Chancellor Angela Merkel is to meet Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras at a eurozone summit on Tuesday to discuss new Greek reform proposals, Greek government sources said. READ  

Students fight for life after chimney plunge
The Düsseldorf Kunstakademie (Academy of Arts). Photo: DPA

Students fight for life after chimney plunge

Two students had to be rescued by fire services after falling 30 metres down a chimney at the the Dusseldorf Academy of Arts on Sunday night. READ  

Lion cub raised in living room leaves home
Zookeeper Isabelle Wallpott with Malor. Photo: DPA

Lion cub raised in living room leaves home

Malor has lived at home with a zookeeper in the Eifel mountains for the last five months. Now the little lion cub is about to be reintroduced to his mother. READ  

July heatwave
Bavarian town roasts in record temperatures
A farmer waters strawberries near Kitzingen in Lower Franconia. Photo: DPA

Bavarian town roasts in record temperatures

The small town of Kitzingen in Bavaria registered a new record temperature for Germany, as the mercury reached 40.3 C on Sunday. READ  

Having kids later makes for a happy family
Children make us happy, but only up to a point. Photo: DPA

Having kids later makes for a happy family

Children are a blessing? Only for parents over a certain age, and then only up to a certain number, a study published by a German research institute shows. READ  

Greece crisis
How will Germany react to the Greek vote?
Angela Merkel has some more sleepless nights ahead of her. Photo: DPA

How will Germany react to the Greek vote?

Now that Greeks have voted against accepting tough austerity conditions in return for a fresh tranche of bailout cash, The Local asked Professor Michael Wohlgemuth of Open Europe Berlin how Chancellor Angela Merkel, other political leaders and the German public may respond. READ  

Post strike ends Monday as agreement reached
Photo: DPA

Post strike ends Monday as agreement reached

Public sector union Verdi has reached a final agreement with Deutsche Post after a strike that lasted four weeks, meaning postal service should return to normal starting on Tuesday. READ  

Women's World Cup
Löw defends Neid as critics circle after defeat
Silvia Neid congratulates England after Germany's 1-0 defeat. Photo: DPA

Löw defends Neid as critics circle after defeat

World Cup winning coach Joachim Löw defended his female counterpart Silvia Neid on Monday after Germany fell to a surprise 1-0 defeat to England in the third place play-off of the Women's World Cup. READ  

Hamburg districts make UNESCO heritage list
An eightfold composite picture of different views of the Chilehaus (Chile House) and the Sprinkenhof in Hamburg. Photo: EPA/Christian Charisius/dpa/picture alliance

Hamburg districts make UNESCO heritage list

The UN cultural agency on Sunday designated Hamburg's historic maritime warehouse and business districts, boasting early 20th century German brick architecture, as World Heritage sites. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Police seize pensioner's WW2 heavy weapons haul
National
How to survive the Europe-wide heatwave
Sport
Is Schweini already out of the door at Bayern?
Politics
How German media shaped the Greece crisis
National
Car assembly robot crushes worker at Volkswagen
Rhineland
Weathermen red-faced over heatwave snow warning
Society
An eye for an eye? Mum protects child in playground with pepperspray
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's final day in Germany
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's second day in Germany
National
Queen Elizabeth II's first day in Germany - as it happened
National
Bus passengers tell fake racists where to get off
Politics
What's really in the Queen's handbag?
National
Germans say USA doesn't respect freedom
National
Yes, you CAN buy adult e-books before 10pm in Germany
VIDEO: Watch a 93-metre turbine crash to earth in slow motion
Gallery
Who's got a shot at the German Film Awards
Rhineland
Anger over 'child-free' beer garden
National
How do you do, Majestät?
National
Man defends right to pee in public with tear gas
Features
The Germans who won Waterloo for the British
Frankfurt
Should Germany ban circus animals?
Hamburg
Where people are having the most sex in Germany
Culture
Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Not this student...
National
Dresden's three-decade-long red light
Politics
Upper house calls for gay marriage now
Berlin
Berlin named 3rd-best city worldwide
Sport
In search of the toughest firefighter
Business & Money
German firms shine for European engineering students
Gallery
Hitler's paintings up for auction
National
German's 70-year search for murdered US pilot
Politics
What the G7 leaders agreed at Elmau
Business & Money
What really makes Germans happy
National
Playmobil builder leaves worldwide legacy
National
The car share that became a drug run
Politics
What Snowden revealed to Germany
Rhineland
Why wolf cubs are being raised by hand
National
Hitler's booze cave found
National
Environment makes Germany worth living in
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,887
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd