Gorecki, Paul K.; Tol, Richard S. J., Selling State Assets: Three Options, 2011
Under the EU/IMF Programme for Financial Support for Ireland, the government undertook to consider the potential for disposing of State assets. In the 2011 Programme for Government a target of up to €2 billion was set for the sale of non‐strategic State assets, but only after adequate regulatory structures to protect consumers were in place. The State owns important parts of the economy – including the ports, airports, electricity generators, and transmission systems (gas and electricity). It also owns a household waste collector, a tour operator, a horticulture business, and a stud farm. The sale of State assets is nothing new – €8.3 billion has already been raised through the sale of State assets in steel, sugar refining, banks, telecommunication and airlines. Largely as a result, the share of the commercial state sector in total employment fell from 8 per cent of total employment in 1980 to 2 per cent in 2008.
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