Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Wednesday, 22 September 2021
Committee on Budgetary Oversight
Pre-Budget 2022 Scrutiny: Irish Fiscal Advisory Council
Mr. Sebastian Barnes:
As Dr. Casey explained earlier, one of the problems with the summer economic statements is that they did not set out what seemed to us to be an up-to-date baseline that reflected the two pieces of big news, one being the speed of the recovery and the second being the fiscal stimulus that was coming. That is why we developed that scenario. It is a relatively positive scenario that nothing really goes wrong and the economy returns fairly close to its trend, and continues to grow quite fast. We think that is a pretty reasonable baseline to think about. There are downside risks relative to that. It could be the impact of the pandemic is much more long-lasting than we thought, there could be bad news on the corporation tax side, and the risks to that scenario are probably either balanced or a bit on the downside. We do not have a separate baseline. It is a kind of working assumption but it is not necessarily a fully worked out view.