IRELAND - The pensions industry has criticised the government for guaranteeing the pension liabilities of semi-state bodies.
The money is expected to keep the government within Maastricht spending guidelines next year despite worsening tax revenues.
Irish Association of Pension Funds (IAPF) chairman Patrick Burke said: "While it certainly is good news for the members of those funds, the whole thrust of recent arguments from the government is that the current pension system is unsustainablem but then they go and do this, which adds to it.
He added: "I understand that it is good for some people but there are prudent ways of funding pensions and this is a reversal of that."
The IAPF said it was formulating a formal response to the government's move. It was concerned it could place further pressure on defined benefit pension schemes.
Burke explained that until recently, many of the semi-state bodies had to fund their own schemes.
He said removing this obligation could encourage them to be less rigorous in accounting for the full cost of new employees, putting yet more pressure on the taxpayer.
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