An Taoiseach Micheál Martin’s admission that Ireland could be facing a “wartime economy” should be taken seriously.
This is the view of People Before Profit Galway representative, Adrian Curran, who said such a situation could result in shortages of food as well as rising prices.
“Russia and Ukraine account for a quarter of the world’s traded wheat,” he said, “and the war, combined with sanctions, means there will be far less to export. Gas and petrol will also rise, with one expert predicting €2.60 for a litre of petrol.”
However, Mr Curran, said there are measures which can be taken to stave off the worst effects of any ‘wartime economy’, such as imposing price controls on energy and items like bread; scrapping the Universal Social Charge on incomes below €70,000 and making corporations pay higher taxes; widening the tax bands for PAYE workers; and raising the minimum wage.
Mr Curran was critical of the government for being reluctant to “interfere in the market”, and for saying it is waiting on decisions from the EU.