Ireland has been forced to accept an EU and IMF bail-out thought to be worth up to £77 billion in a deal designed to save the euro. British taxpayers now face paying a bill of up to £7 billion as under a deal signed by the last Labour government, British taxpayers are liable to share in the cost of any EU bail-out.
David Cameron pledged to help Ireland as a close 'neighbour and friend' but refused to discuss how much aid we would be contributing or whether the bulk of it would come via an Anglo-Irish agreement or a wider EU deal. Is David Cameron suggesting an extra loan directly to Ireland? He may well be because British financial institutions have £140 billion of assets tied up in Irish banks and Irish banks are broke. It was only on Friday that the Prime Minister was admitting that the UK would have to borrow even more this year if his government decides to lend directly to Dublin.
Ireland receives over 7% of our exports - more than Brazil, Russia, India and China combined. David Cameron seemed proud to state that fact this weekend. What does the UK have to export? The following graphic answers the question.
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Notice the large drops in petrol, cars and other oils as well as the decreases over the 2009/2010 period. What is David Cameron doing about it? The UK can't survive on financial services and tourism any longer. The UK government has to start concentrating on improving our manufacturing base. Maybe this idea is a step in the right direction. It's certainly worth a try.