Radical measures will be required to reduce Ireland's "staggering" unemployment Irish jobs minister Richard Bruton told supporters on Saturday, according to the Wall Street Journal.

He said he plans to introduce flexibility for new hires in businesses like tourism, hotels and restaurants, but he does not intend to lower the basic pay rates in those industries.

Last week, Bruton ran into opposition from labor unions and lawmakers when he proposed to reform protections for private sector workers.

"Many businesses are hanging on by their fingernails. We must quickly make decisions on reform across all sectors of the economy in order to build momentum for economic recovery," Bruton said in a speech to party members.

According to figures release last week by the Irish government, the Irish jobless rate has reached 14.8% of the labor force.