State debt costs every Irish worker €3400 a year

The Republic's debt is four times the size it was in 2007...

The chief executive of the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) has revealed that servicing the nation's debt costs every worker €3,400 in tax annually.

Conor O'Kelly compared this to the €900 per year we each paid back in interest in 2007. Since then, the country's debt pile has increased fourfold.

Our current debt pile is €207bn, which breaks down to a €102,000 debt for every Irish employee.

O'Kelly said:

"That is easily the highest in Europe, by a mile. It's one of the highest ratios in the world".

Speaking at the inaugural Global Business Forum at Trinity College yesterday, he said that whie our debt-to-GDP ratio is falling as the economy recovers, our level of debt is not.

O'Kelly said:

"It is an extraordinary environment and that leads people to believe that the crisis is over and we can move on.

"But unfortunately, like households, and there's a lot of private debt still in existence, similarly the country has a legacy.

"The debt in Ireland has risen by four times since 2007. The size of the debt isn't going down, the size of the economy is growing. And that's making our (debt-to-GDP) ratio fall. In actual terms we owe €207bn. That's up from €47bn in 2007".

Mr O'Kelly has estimated that the State is likely to get back approximately €30bn of the money put into bailing out the banks.