ECB says Ireland should stick to austerity target

Sept 21 Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:18am EDT

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Sept 21 (Reuters) - Ireland should not ease up on austerity in its annual budget next month but stick to a target of 3.1 billion euros worth of spending cuts and tax hikes, European Central Bank Executive Board member Joerg Asmussen said on Saturday.

Ireland last year beat the deficit target under its bailout, leading to calls by government ministers for a more modest fiscal adjustment than agreed with lenders the European Union, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank.

"I would really suggest to stick to the budget plan for the next year and to stick to the figure of 3.1" billion euros Asmussen said in an interview with Irish state broadcaster RTE.

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