IMF concerned over high Irish jobless rate
(DUBLIN) - The International Monetary Fund said Friday it is satisfied with bailed-out Ireland's efforts to stabilise its economy, but added that a high unemployment rate was cause for concern and needed to come down.
In a fifth review of Dublin's progress since a joint EU-IMF 85-billion-euros debt rescue in late 2010, the IMF said Ireland had done well despite a weak external environment.
Now that the economy is on the right tack, the government's priority has to be to reduce an unemployment rate above 14 percent, said Craig Beaument, the head of the IMF team on Ireland.
On Monday, the IMF extended 3.2 billion euros ($4.3 billion) to Ireland as part of the bailout, citing the country's reform efforts.
"The Irish authorities continue to advance wide-ranging reforms to restore the health of the financial system so it can support Ireland's recovery," the IMF said in announcing the payment.
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