I propose to take Questions Nos. 131, 132, 134 and 135 together.
The Government decided in September that Budget 2020 would be based on the assumption of a disorderly Brexit at end-October. Given the information available at the time this was the safest and most appropriate option to take. Since I published Budget 2020, the risk of the UK departing the EU this year without a deal has been averted. However, the ultimate outcome is still highly uncertain and a disorderly Brexit in 2020 while less likely, is still possible.
Should the UK leave the EU on an orderly basis, Ireland’s fiscal position, inter alia, would likely improve with both increased revenues and lower expenditure than forecast at Budget 2020. This would have a positive effect on both the General Government Balance and the Structural Balance. The fiscal forecast published with the Summer Economic Statement (SES) in June is instructive as to the fiscal situation under an orderly scenario.
Once clarity is achieved in relation to Brexit and full year Exchequer returns are available, the Department of Finance will update the fiscal forecasts in preparation for the Stability Programme Update in the usual manner.