"Talks went on into the night as Irish ministers insisted that they could manage their stricken finances but other Governments expressed concerns that an emergency bail-out may be required as early as today.
"Investors have rushed to sell Irish debts in recent weeks and there is growing speculation that if Europe fails to intervene there may be a run on other countries, including Spain and Portugal. The EU rescue package, seen as very likely by European officials, could cost the British taxpayers as much as £7billion following a deal agreed by Alistair Darling when he was still chancellor in the political limbo following the general election in May. Under its terms, Britain agreed to underwrite EU plans to rescue countries in difficulty.
"David Cameron has publicly expressed support for steps to assist Ireland. Several British banks, particularly RBS, have exposure to Irish government debt amounting to billions of pounds and have watched their shares fall over the past week."