Agreement ‘imminent’ on new Croke Park deal

The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin has arrived at the talks, aimed at securing an extension to the Croke Park Agreement - indicating a deal is imminent.

Negotiations on cutting a further one billion euro from the public sector pay bill continued through the night - after four unions walked out.

It was a dramatic night at the Croke Park extension talks.

Four unions walked out - namely the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, the Irish Medical Organisation, the Civil and Public Services Union, and Unite.

On their way out, they warned that they would "mobilise" their members if the Government attempted to legislate for pay cuts.

But SIPTU, IMPACT and the Irish National Teachers Organisation remain at the talks table.

Cuts of between 5 and 10 per cent to public servants who earn 65 thousand euro or more have been discussed; along with an extension to the working week.

Those who work 35 hours or more will be asked to work 37 - and those already working 37 will have to work 39.

The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin arrived at the talks shortly before 7 - indicating a deal may be imminent.