Uncertainty, volatility and price hikes "here to stay" says Minister 3 months ago

Uncertainty, volatility and price hikes "here to stay" says Minister

"It is quite possible that there will be further increases."

Price hikes are here to stay for the "foreseeable future", according to Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath.

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Rising inflation and the increasing cost of living in Ireland has become a frequent subject of conversation in recent weeks, with President Michael D. Higgins set to add his two cents to the matter at a SIPTU conference on Tuesday.

Notable price increases in gas and electricity bills were announced by both Bord Gáis and Energia earlier this month, reflecting an overall grim and costly trend.

The latest view from Government? Get used to it.

"We are in a period of incredible uncertainty," McGrath told RTÉ News on Tuesday morning.

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"We have seen major increases in fuel prices in recent times. We know that is hurting consumers and businesses as well. That's why we've made decisions outside of a budgetary framework that we would, in normal circumstances, never countenance.

"So, I think volatility is here to stay for the foreseeable future," the Minister continued.

"It is quite possible that there will be further increases.

"We can't predict with any certainty the direction of travel, but we do believe uncertainty and volatility is here for a while yet and that could lead to further increases in the costs that people are facing."

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With regards to providing housing for Ukrainian refugees, Minister McGrath acknowledged that the costs will be high for all involved, but it represents "the right thing to do".

"It is the case for about 10,000 refugees, to cater for all of their costs over the full year; the cost is of the order of €400 – €500 million," McGrath outlined.

"But we do anticipate that many of the refugees coming here will want to work, and there are employment opportunities in the Irish economy now.

"Many others will want to return home as soon as it is safe to do so, so any estimates are just that – they are based on certain assumptions."

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It has been estimated that as many as 100,000 Ukrainian refugees could arrive into Ireland, representing a cost of €2.5 billion to the economy.

Featured Image of Michael McGrath via Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie