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Irelands Finance

 The Irish Stock Exchange separated from the UK stock exchange in 1995 and is an independent entity.
The International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) is located in the Custom House Docks Area in Dublin. The IFSC has been established by the Irish Government to create an international financial services industry in Ireland. Tax advantages are available to set up in the IFSC centre. Activities must be on behalf of nonresidents and if relevant in non-Irish currencies. The activities that qualify include: fund management, insurance, foreign exchange dealing and brokerage operations, treasury management, financial advice and financing activities. The main clearing banks are Allied Irish Banks, Bank of Ireland, National Irish Bank Limited and Ulster Bank Limited.

GDP 2006-2008

The Irish government revised its 2006 economic growth estimates upwards on Thursday on the basis of strong data in the year to date, and cut further its expected borrowing needs thanks to a surging tax take.

In its Pre-Budget Outlook, the Finance Ministry forecast growth of 5.25 percent this year in gross domestic product (GDP) and 5.75 percent in gross national product (GNP).

Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern said earlier this year GDP was expected to rise by around 4.8 percent in 2006, compared with 5.5 percent in 2005. The Central Bank's most recent estimate is for 5.25 percent growth in GDP and 5.5 percent for GNP.

The latest Reuters poll of Irish economists saw GDP growing 5.5 percent this year, with GNP seen up 5.8 percent.

"The report points out that the outlook for the Irish economy over the period 2006-2008 is broadly positive," the ministry said in its Outlook, which gives forecasts for 2006-8.

It said that for the period 2006 to 2008 the Department of Finance expected GDP and GNP to expand by 5 percent a year.

Ireland's Provincial Flags
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 Gaelic is the Celtic branch of the Indo-European family of languages. About one person in five in Ireland can speak Irish today, but only one in 20 use it daily. In Scotland approximately 80,000 people speak Gaelic.
 Saint Patrick (about 389-461) is the patron saint of Ireland. Patrick was born in Britain.
  Ireland, together with Britain, joined the European Economic Community in 1973.
 The population of the island as a whole is just under 6 million(2006), 4.20 million live in the Irish Republic and 1.7 million live in Northern Ireland.
Ireland is a parliamentary democracy. The National Parliament (Oireachtas) consists of the President and two Houses: Dáil Éireann (the House of Representatives) and Seanad Éireann (the Senate) Northern Ireland has a parliamentary monarchy and an electoral democracy. The voting age is 18 in both parts of Ireland.
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