SOCIAL welfare benefits are too high in Ireland and need to be revised to encourage people back to work, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said.
The organisation warned that dole payments are high by international standards and responsible for "low exit rates" from the Live Register.
As the IMF forecast the economy to grow by just 0.5pc this year, it said that certain welfare payments should be means-tested to avoid long-term unemployment.
The organisation - one of three bodies overseeing Ireland's €64.5bn euro bailout - suggested people out of work should be willing to take jobs regardless of suitability.
"It is also important to ensure that jobseekers are willing and able to fill jobs when they become available," it said.