Securing Fairness and Wellbeing: A Ten Year Agenda Sean Healy and Brigid Reynolds
Much has been achieved on the economy over the past decade. This
has led to a situation where Ireland’s position on international league
tables has been transformed. Economic growth has been remarkable.
Between 1993 and 2001 the annual real growth rate of the Irish
economy was twice the average recorded over the preceding three
decades (8 per cent a year compared to 3.5 per cent a year in the past).
These days it is averaging about 5 per cent a year. Over the past decade
the Irish economy has significantly outperformed the EU average and
continues to do so.
Both employment and unemployment have also changed substantially.
Unemployment in 1987 was in excess of 15 per cent. Today it is just
over 4 per cent. While this is still a challenge that requires specific
policy initiatives, it is fundamentally different from the situation faced
in the 1980s.