Upcoming budgets will not be based on recent CSO figures - Noonan

The Taoiseach admitted the figures do not accurately reflect the economy

Mid Year Expenditure Report, Michael Noonan, CSO, growth, Ireland, budgets, expenditure,

Finance Minister Michael Noonan (right) and Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe at Government Buildings | Image: RollingNews.ie

The finance and public expenditure ministers have warned they will not base budgets on yesterday's GDP figures.

A 26.3% growth in the economy for 2015 has been described by some internationally as "leprechaun economics".

Earlier the Taoiseach Enda Kenny admitted in the Dáil the figures do not reflect the economy accurately.

While the Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin descried the figures as "false" and that no-one in their right mind would believe them.

But Finance Minister Michael Noonan says he will not be taking the CSO figures into account when deciding on the budget.

The Mid Year Expenditure Report - launched today - says that in the last two years, departmental spending has increased by an average 2.5% per annum, while staffing numbers across the public service grew by 8,600 in 2015, and by more than 2,000 to date this year.

"The Lansdowne Road Agreement in particular plays a key role in driving increased productivity across the public service while setting out an agreed pathway for pay restoration to 2018 for public servants that is affordable and achievable on a fiscally sustainable basis," it says.

The report is also consistent with commitments in the Programme for a Partnership Government.

It proposes to increase the level of current expenditure from its 2016 base level by at least €6.75bn by 2021, and to deliver an additional €4bn in cumulative capital expenditure over the period 2017 to 2021.

While €1bn per annum is to be contributed to the Rainy Day fund from 2019 onwards.