Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Questions (179)

Bernard Durkan


179. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Finance the degree to which he and his Department continue to monitor the performance of all Government Departments and State or semi-State agencies with a view to maximisation of their contribution toward economic recovery; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23406/14]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

The Government's Medium-term Economic Strategy (MTES) provides an overarching high-level integrated whole-of-Government framework to drive and facilitate the development of appropriate sectoral and horizontal policies which will be refined to take account of the MTES.  Monitoring/implementation arrangements for the MTES are under consideration at present.  This year we have begun the process of combining our former troika management team with our MTES team to create an Economic Development and Growth Office.

Implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs, which sets out the Government's strategy in relation to getting Ireland back to work is overseen by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Recovery and Jobs.  The Action Plan for Jobs is a key component of the Government's response to the unemployment crisis and is a whole of government, multi-annual initiative which mobilises all Government Departments to work towards the objective of supporting job creation.  The Department of Finance was actively involved in the compilation of the most recent plan for 2014 and monitors the implementation of actions for which it is responsible.

Following Ireland's exit from the IMF/ECB/European Commission Programme in December 2013, Ireland is now subject to post programme surveillance which is co-ordinated by my Department.  This will involve twice yearly review missions. This has been a long standing feature of IMF programmes. In the case of the EU, this surveillance is part of the wider governance changes that have been put in place for all euro area Member States, which include the EU Semester, the six-pack and the two-pack regulations, to improve the way the euro area functions. Post programme  surveillance includes an examination of the financial sector, fiscal and expenditure policy as well as the implementation of identified structural reforms across various areas of Government.    

The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has a very significant responsibility for all Departmental expenditure matters and the general performance of Departments.