NERI Seminar: Invest and Do No Further Harm – presentation of the 2nd NERI Quarterly Economic Observer

27 June 2012, 3:00pm - 4:30pm

The NERI (Nevin Economic Research Institute) will hold a seminar on Wednesday 27th June 2012 at 3pm (note earlier starting time than usual) entitled Invest and Do No Further Harm - presentation of the 2nd NERI Quarterly Economic Observer (Summer 2012).

The NERI seminar series aims to provide a forum for the presentation of research on topics of relevance to Irish public policy (North and South) and will take the format of a presentation of the research followed by a questions and answers/discussion. The series will continue throughout 2012.

The seminars are open to all who are interested and are free to attend.

Details of the next seminar are:

Speaker: Dr Tom Healy, Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI)

Time: 3pm Wednesday 27th June

Abstract: The most recent data released by various agencies clearly show that fiscal austerity is not working. Unemployment remains close to 15% of the workforce, the level of domestic demand continues to contract or stagnate and the indications for export growth are not encouraging as our key trading partners enter a new recession. The crisis in public finances across Europe is not only linked to a crisis of market confidence and monetary stability: there is a crisis in the 'real economy' where aggregate demand is falling and long-term unemployment is embedded. Given the unprecedented uncertainty in which Europe Union member states find themselves coupled with the risk of a new and prolonged depression across European countries we argue for a cautious fiscal stance, here, based on the principles of 'doing no further harm' and bringing forward in the shortest possible time frame a programme of investment in priority infrastructure.
In this Quarterly we present the case for a movement towards fiscal sustainability through a balance of measures including:

  • Initiation of a targeted, frontloaded and timely investment stimulus drawing on a mix of public, private and European Investment Bank funds;
  • Aside from savings arising from the 'Croke Park Agreement' no further cuts in the overall level of discretionary voted capital and current expenditure;
  • A reduction in public expenditure associated with high levels of unemployment and an increase in revenue buoyancy through growth-enhancing measures over time; and
  • A closing of existing tax breaks and reliefs and a graduated and incremental increase in the average target tax-take for high-income households with the aim of reducing the government deficit to below 3% of GDP by 2017.

Keywords: Growth, Employment, Investment


To register your interest in attending and for further details please e-mail


Further seminars are planned and details will be circulated in advance of these seminars.

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