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Irish retailers face spending cuts and tax rises

Retailers in the Republic of Ireland are facing uncertainty in the wake of the proposed €85bn (£72bn) bailout of the country by the European Union with spending cuts and tax rises on the agenda.

While retailers are likely to benefit from calls by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to cut the minimum wage in the Republic of Ireland the outlook is uncertain with an austerity budget set to be passed on December 7.

The proposal to slash the minimum wage by the IMF, which along with the EU is part-funding the bailout of Ireland, would see it cut from its current £7.33 an hour. The figure is among the highest minimum wages in Europe and compares to £5.93 an hour in Britain. Cuts could help retailers during the hard times in Ireland although it is not known if there will be further enforcements for retailers.

The Irish government is expected to outline a four-year austerity plan made up of €15bn (£12.7bn) of spending cuts and tax rises over the next four years today.

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