Brendan Howlin made his comments in the Dail last night after asking the CEO of the Labour Relations Commission to make contact with unions to see if the Croke Park 2 deal can be revived.
He said the government will talk to staff who are prepared to reach a realistic compromise but he warned the time for any discussions is running out.
Despite widespread rejection of the deal, Minister Howlin still believes Croke park 2 was a fair compromise:
The Taoiseach says he hopes to have an answer from unions within a fortnight on whether to have new talks on the issue.
But Donegal Deputy Padraig Maclochlainn says the savings required could be found elsewhere and has again called for a new tax in high earners: