“IRELAND IS A living example that EU-IMF adjustment programmes are successful provided there is a strong ownership and genuine commitment to reforms.”
That was the assessment of EU finance ministers who were meeting in Brussels this evening. The Eurogroup’s statement followed Ireland’s decision to exit the bailout programme without requesting a backup of financial assistance.
In a statement following the meeting, Dutch Finance Minister and and Eurogroup president Jeroen Dijsselbloem said the group “fully support Ireland’s decision to request a clean exit from the programme.”
Furthermore, we welcome the reaffirmed commitment by the Irish authorities to pursue reform efforts beyond the programme period to address remaining challenges.
The group say they wished to “congratulate the Irish authorities for the successful implementation of the programme” and “commend the Irish people for their efforts and achievements under difficult circumstances.”
It was also announced this evening that Spain would not be requesting any further assistance when the country exits its banking bailout in January.
Although not under a full programme like Ireland, Spain’s banks were given €100 billion in financial assistance by the European Financial Stability Fund last year.
The Eurogroup delivered similar sentiments on the Spanish bailout exit at it did on Ireland’s announcement.
“The Irish and Spanish people have gone through a difficult period but I am now confident that their efforts will pay off in the coming years. Now these economies are back on the road to recovery, ” said Dijsselbloem.
Read: ‘This is the right decision for Ireland’: Taoiseach confirms bailout exit without credit line >