Ireland makes €60bn in interest payments on National Debt in last decade

Ireland makes €60bn in interest payments on National Debt in last decade

Ireland has paid €60bn interest on its National Debt over the last 10 years.

That is three times more than was paid in interest in the years between 2003 and 2009.

The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) has told an Oireachtas committee that Ireland's absolute debt stands at more than €200bn.

It has also warned of Ireland being particularly open to interest rate shocks that could be caused by events like Brexit.

In a submission to the Public Accounts Committee, the NTMA said: "This marked increase in our debt level is essentially a permanent legacy of the crisis and while Irish bond yields are trading close to core eurozone levels, our relative debt level is one of the highest in the eurozone.

"In the 10 years since the onset of the crisis, we have paid close to €60bn in interest on our debt; in the previous 10 years we paid close to €20bn in interest costs.

"That increased interest has added to the overall debt level because up until last year's budget surplus, we have had to borrow to pay this interest."

They went on to say that the country's economy is more vulnerable to shock because of the high stock of debt.

They said: "In layman's terms, when borrowing rates went down, Ireland benefited more than other countries as we had higher debt than others. If and when they go up, Ireland is likely to feel the downside more than lower-debt countries."


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