December 12, 2016 / 5:11 PM / in 7 months

Irish 2016 budget deficit may be as low as 0.7 percent - finance minister

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Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan arrives for the funeral service of Munster rugby coach Anthony Foley at St. Flannan's Church in Killaloe, Ireland October 21, 2016.Clodagh Kilcoyne

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland's budget deficit may fall as low as 0.7 percent this year, down from an earlier forecast of 0.9 percent, thanks to strong tax revenues, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said on Monday.

The deficit will fall to at least as low as 0.8 percent and possibly 0.7 percent, Noonan told journalists on the sidelines of a book launch in Dublin, his spokesman said. The budget deficit was 2.3 percent last year, down from a peak of 14 percent in 2009.

Reporting by Conor Humphries; editing by Andrew Roche

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