The Environment Minister says Ireland doesn't have an EU loophole to avoid water charges.
Alan Kelly has denied that there is a rule in EU law which exempts Ireland from charging houses for water.
It had been claimed that Ireland secured a loophole when water charges were introduced at EU level in the last decade.
But Minister Kelly said Ireland no longer has a "derogation" - an exemption from law - due to the Troika programme.
He said it was "a consequence of the circumstances in this country … and the manner in which the agreement with the Troika was signed up [to] by the previous Government."
"We not have a derogation because we now have committed to the model that we have."