The Memorandum of Understanding between the Irish government and the troika of EU, ECB and IMF was agreed in December 2010. It contained commitments to policy changes designed to improve competitiveness through acting on professional service costs, the structure of the energy sector and similar matters. Several commentators on this site have been arguing recently that the new government is delivering austerity without reform. Here’s an interesting recent article from the Economic Journal and an earlier version on open access if you cannot get into the ucd online library.
Guglielmo Barone and Federico Cingano conclude that OECD countries which have gone furthest in tackling anti-competitive practices have enjoyed enhanced performance in industry sectors which are consumers of the products and services of the formerly rent-absorbing firms and professions.
Their conclusions are supportive of the MoU reform agenda, and of the recommendations in the report of the State Assets Review Group on vertical separation (unbundling) in the energy sector.
Happy New Year to you and yours.