Sunday, August 13, 2023

Facts: Ireland's GDP per capita was €25,300 in 2022

Last April the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published gross domestic product (GDP) data for countries across the globe, in current US dollars.

The Irish level adjusted by me for overseas multinational data in the National Accounts was at $26,600 (€25,300) in 2022 with Lithuania and Portugal just behind and Estonia and Czech Republic ahead.

If the polluted Modified GNI* metric was used the GDP per capita would be €53,600.

Irish public debt rose more than 11% to €226bn at the end of 2022. The Department of Finance announced in March 2023 that the per capita debt was at €44,000. It said, "Ireland has one the highest per capita debt burdens in the world."  

Last February The Financial Times ran a story titled "Irish central banker defends runaway economic growth as ‘real.’"

Sept 2023: Irish wealthiest in the World in 2023! Brits ahead in GDP per capita

However, the governor was economical with the truth.

Gabriel Makhlouf told the Financial Times that much of Ireland’s growth — forecast to be 12.2% last year, more than treble growth in the overall EU — comes from “real factories with real people” even if a lot of activity stems from big technology and pharmaceutical groups.

“Too many people think or jump to the conclusion that this is all about intellectual property that’s sort of moving around and it’s not real, and that’s wrong,” Makhlouf said.

In late 2021 economists at the Central Bank of Ireland noted: "Further increases in exports due to contract manufacturing and merchanting will continue to distort Ireland’s trade performance and inflate GDP in the National Accounts."

Ireland is not among the wealthy countries.

Last June Eurostat reported that actual individual consumption (AIC) consists of goods and services actually consumed by households, irrespective of whether they were purchased and paid for by households directly, by government, or by nonprofit organizations. It said the AIC per capita is an indicator of the material welfare of households.

Ireland in 2022 fell to 87, meaning AIC was 13% below the EU average and a gap of 32% with Germany.

Ireland was at 115% in 2006-7!

Patrick Honohan, a former governor of the Central Bank and emeritus professor of economics at Trinity College, Dublin, has written a piece "Is Ireland really the most prosperous country in Europe?"

Ireland’s average per capita consumption ranked 21 in the world in 2017 (ignoring countries with less than a million population).

The OECD club of mainly advanced economies, ranked Ireland 19 of 38 countries for household net adjusted disposable income.

The 2022 edition of the European Commission's Scoreboard of 2,500 business companies, outlines spending on R&D (research and development) worldwide in 2021.

Ireland has 24 companies on the global listing led by Medtronic of the US having a spend of €2.4bn (the redomiciled firms are mainly American). However, the only Irish-born companies are Kerry Group and both Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Banks.

Irish SMEs (small and medium-sized firms) also export less than their European counterparts. Survey data shows the percentage of SMEs that do not export fluctuated between 58% and 65% over the past 5 years – well above the Euro Area (single currency area) average. In 2022 Irish companies exported to the other 19 other member countries, were at a paltry €8.9bn. The Euro Area has a population of 347mn including Ireland's 5.057mn.