Irish central bank raises growth estimates as Brexit fails to dent Ireland's economy

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The City Of Dublin
The central bank has shifted its attitude (Source: Getty)

Ireland's central bank has raised its 2017 economic growth forecast, as the country continues a healthy recovery since the financial crisis.

The bank raised estimates for GDP growth to 4.5 per cent, up from the 3.5 per cent it predicted three months ago.

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Ireland's economy has been the best performing in the European Union since 2014, seeing strong momentum at home and improved trading abroad, particularly in European markets.

However the bank also expects growth to slow to 3.6 per cent in 2018, though this is another markup on a previous estimate of 3.2 per cent.

The adjustment is a change in tune from the central bank, which had previously been cautious as it anticipated fallout from the Brexit vote impacting Ireland.

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But it said today that its upgrades were a result of there being no immediate Brexit hit.

Ireland was badly hit in the financial crisis but has showed several signs of recovery recently. The central bank decision comes after news earlier today that Bank of Ireland, the biggest lender to the Irish economy, is now strong enough to resume paying dividends from 2018.

But chief economist Gabriel Fagan remained moderate in his outlook. “As a small and open economy, Ireland continues to face economic risks externally," he said. "And despite there being little new information emerging to date, it is clear that the economic impact of Brexit on Ireland is set to be negative and material. At home, we must continue to prudently monitor the risk of overheating.”

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