Belfast Telegraph

Taoiseach Brian Cowen in top ten of world leaders

He is the most unpopular Taoiseach since the foundation of the Republic, but Brian Cowen has been named as one of the top 10 leaders in the world in a prestigious new poll.

Under the title The Fiscal Taskmaster, he is described by the current affairs journal as having won the “admiration of the international community”.

It states: “With Ireland's once-roaring economy staggered by the banking crisis — unemployment is at 13%, emigration is rising, and the money markets rank Ireland not far behind Greece on the list of Europe's big-time losers — Prime Minister Brian Cowen and his able finance minister, Brian Lenihan, are prescribing harsh medicine.”

Written by reporter Christopher Dickey, the article notes: “Cowen's ratings have plunged to a mere 18%, and his Fianna Fail party can expect a drubbing in the 2012 national elections.

On a more optimistic note, the article states: “There's some hope that his government's unpopular measures will be rewarded in the long run: surveys suggest that Irish consumer confidence is on the rise again.”

Other world leaders included on the top ten list are the UK's David Cameron, France's Nicolas Sarkozy, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and Liberia's Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

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