Ireland vs. EU: Education

When people think about higher education, there are a few countries and universities that immediately come to mind. The United States is consistently at the top of the world list, with the UK and Germany within the top 5. Schools such as MIT in the U.S. and Cambridge in the UK are two of the best and most popular universities in the world. However, Ireland doesn’t seem to fall too far behind some of these top countries. Ireland in some instances comes on top of the U.S. in relation to elementary education. There are many different studies that show different results. Yet throughout most there are some consistencies in how Ireland and the EU is ranked.

Based off of “The World University Rankings” for 2020, the UK has 8 of the top 10 universities in Europe. Ireland’s Trinity College is the top ranked Irish school, yet it doesn’t come in until 76th on the list. When looking at the population if Ireland, the statistics tell a different story. The population with at least upper secondary education in Ireland is well …

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Property tax could help solve economic inequality

The 2020 Irish Budget, written by the Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe, is likely to have some major changes implemented within the coming years. The Department of Finance has begun drafting multiple different variations of possible changes in taxation, many of which are targeted at the Vehicle Registration Tax. 

This proposed taxation would crack down on high CO2 emission vehicles and would possibly provide grants or tax breaks to owners of hybrid or fully electric vehicles. In this particular budget, there has been a substantial focus on the environment and upholding the Irish promises of maintaining and promoting environmentally friendly options.

Beyond just these changes, there has been mention of increasing property taxes in the hopes of having a more fair taxation system. The Nevin Economic Research Institute (NERI) notes that there is substantial income tax collection inequality and that an increase on home tax could be more beneficial in diversifying the collection of tax revenue. Additionally, a home value is usually more substantial than a person’s income, so applying a harsher tax on  property could bring in a more …

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Pound put on diet, losing weight fast

The price of a pound sterling is based very heavily on what the next few months in the UK hold in regards to Brexit. Currently, the UK is in the middle of electing a new prime minister. As the head of the cabinet and leader of ministers in the executive branch, this person has a significant influence of the political state of the UK. Their actions are bound to affect the price of currency, and already have proven to have done so. 

Within the last week, both conservative candidates who are running for the position of prime minister mentioned that they are both in support of the creation of a hard border in the case that there were to be a no-deal Brexit. Immediately after this debate, the pence dropped significantly in value. 

The pound usually costs around 0.7-0.85 cents to purchase, but as of 16 July you can exchange 90.22 cents for one pound. This is the lowest value that a pence has been in the last 27 years, and is showing trends that indicate the value will continue …

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Ireland vs US: Gas Prices

When thinking of purchasing a car  one must consider many factors: cost, quality, practicality (to some degree), make, model, interior fabric, etc. One factor that must also hold a decent amount of weight in the decision process is monthly costs. This includes how much you drive, how many kilometers per liter your car gets for gas, and any possible maintenance or upgrades you plan on getting in the near future. 

Fuel efficiency is especially huge, given that gas prices are always fluctuating. Additionally, there is an increased push in Ireland towards the transition of cars from petrol based to electricity based. 

Ireland’s AA car servicing company has noted in a recent survey that overall the price of owning  a family car has been dropping but prices for other vital aspects of car maintenance are still higher than the average Eurozone cost. 

Irish gas prices have decreased by 2.5pc in the last 12 months. Although this is a positive sign for car owners and drivers, this decrease was well needed. At the beginning of 2019, prices had a substantial hike that …

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Ireland vs US: University Prices

Education is valued very differently in the United States and the European Union, but especially Ireland. In an earlier article, it was noted that Ireland in 2018 spent €10.8 billion, or 14.16pc of their entire government expenditure on education. The United States allocated a whopping 6pc of the entire government budget to education, or $68.5 billion, which was down 14pc from the previous year. 

This huge difference in the government’s focus on education gives students in Ireland, and all across the EU, the chance to gain upper level education for an affordable price. In general, students who are striving to get a degree in a higher education institution are very likely within their four year to take out at least one student loan in order to pay tuition for part of, if not all of their educational experience. 

In Ireland, the tuition fees that are associated with which program you choose to pursue as well as if you are from in or outside of the European Union. These differentiations also occur in the United States, but in a different degree. …

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Irish economy at risk

The National Competitiveness Council, or NCC, is an organization that collects, analyzes, and reports data and statistics about the Irish government. In general, it focuses on comparisons of the growth and sustainability across the European Union. This organization has looked into the sustainability of economic health across a multitude of different scenarios. 

As of late, this organization has noted that the Irish economy is becoming too dependent on a small number of domestic firms that fall within similar sectors of the business market. Although it is always a positive to support your home companies, there are some major issues that may come from this increased reliance. 

To begin, Ireland’s economic dependence has been primarily within the goods and services export sectors. There has been a huge focus on pharmaceutical and chemicals being exported, with around 58pc of total exports in 2018 being in this sector; in 2017 it was at 45pc. Computer services are also dominating the market, making up 43pc in 2018, which was 3pc lower than in 2017. These bulk exports make up a huge part of the …

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SME debt rises

Debt can come from a variety of places, especially when you are working within the confines of a business and it’s very specific budget. Many times, debt for these institutions is in the form of owed money; this owed money was usually a loan from the bank. 

Within the recent years, the prices of these loans, or borrowing costs, have increased. The first three months of 2019 have seen significant growth in this area, despite economist’s predictions that interest rates would be falling within the year. 

SME’s, or small-to-medium enterprises, saw these high borrowing costs as a sign that they should proceed with extreme caution when working within the borrowing market. These businesses already pay some of the highest interest rates in the European Union and have made sure to be well educated on the possibilities of economic changes or interest hikes on their finances. 

Small-to-medium enterprises are extremely important to have in any market, given that they play a key role in employment. Small enterprises are defined as having less than 50 employees and have an annual turnover or …

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Ireland market basket prices reach EU heights

As of late, Ireland has been flagged as one of the most expensive countries in the EU for food. A market basket is a list of foods, convenience items, and services that are supposed to be representative of an average household spending which is used by economists to compare the consumer price index of each country. In general, this index also allows unflation to be recorded and compared from country to country.

Using this tool, Eurostat has found that prices of food an alcohol in Ireland are 20% higher than the average country, making it the fourth most expensive in the EU. This is surprising, given Ireland’s background as an agricultural nation.

For food alone, Ireland’s prices are 1.2 times more expensive when compared to the other 28 nations in the European Union. These high prices are harmful to consumers, but a definite draw for other EU based grocers. German companies Lidl and Aldi have begun expanding into Ireland, reducing prices below that of their Irish competitors. This business tactic is still effective, given that these discounted prices …

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Recent currency conversions

One of the hardest parts of traveling outside of the EU, or any area that uses the same currency as your own is dealing with exchange rates. Many people traveling from Ireland for business or pleasure to their neighboring country, the United Kingdom, many times find themselves exchanging their hard earned euros for a lesser amount of British pounds.

As of late, any person traveling from the EU to the UK may have noticed a decline in the value of the pound compared to that of the euro. Within the last month and a half, the pound has hit record lows since 2009; the exchange rate is 88.92 pence per euro.  

This low extends to the exchange rate associated with the United States dollar. One pound sterling is currently exchanged for $1.268. In just the beginning of May 2019, the rate was $1.32/pound. This is a significant loss in value over one month’s time.  

This fall is heavily due to the instability of the economy that rests on the shoulders of the October 31 Brexit decision. The …

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Ireland tourism rates rise leaves no trace on total spending

During the first quarter of 2019, it seemed that tourism spending has fallen by 4%. What is odd about this number is the fact that the rate of travel to Ireland has risen by 5.5%. After further investigation, data showed that although the frequency of traveling to Ireland increased, the amount of time that a tourist was to stay in the country has decreased by 3.2%.

With tourism number usually around 12.5 million people over 3 months time, this 3% decrease has left only 11.64 million. 3pc can make a huge impact in total income, especially with the high number of visitors per year.

Tourism is a main form of income in Ireland, especially in the city of Dublin. With a significant decrease in the number of people spending in very tourist oriented areas, there may be a significant amount of competition.

This competition will occur all throughout the city, causing stores with similar products to decrease prices so that they can stand out from their competition. The problem with this tactic is the fact that price …

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