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'Irish economy will be hit harder by downturn'

Published 01/01/2008

A leading economist has warned that Ireland will face a sharper downturn in the economy in 2008 than other countries in the West.

Pat Mc Ardle, Ulster Bank chief economist has warned that the housing slowdown here coupled with rising oil prices and a downturn in the US economy will hit Ireland hard.

'Global economic growth will be slower because central banks have increased interest rates and that will affect the Americas , Europe and the UK, the ones that will escape the effects of that are those like China.

Within Ireland we have an extra factor which is the housing slowdown so it's like a double whammy - this is why the decrease in the rate of growth here will be bigger than anywhere else' he said.

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