Irish finance minister confident of beating 2013 deficit target

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February 21, 2013 2:00 AM EST

Ireland's finance minister said on Wednesday he was confident the government would beat its target of reducing its budget deficit to below 7.5 percent of gross domestic product by the end of this year.

Ireland has beaten deficit targets for the last two years set as part of an EU/IMF bailout it aims to exit from later this year. The government trimmed the gap between its revenue and spending to below 8 percent of GDP last year.

"The budget target of this year is a deficit of 7.5 (percent of GDP), already I feel we're going to beat it," Noonan told an event in London.

(Reporting by Laura Noonan, Writing by Padraic Halpin, Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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