READ MORE- Ryan Report on clerical child sex abuse in Ireland reaches one-year milestone

Religious orders in Ireland still owe the State more than €500m ($657 million) arising from their agreement to compensate thousands of people who were abused in their childhood while living n state care.

Initially the 18 congregations involved pledged a total of €680million ($893million) in cash and property which would cover half the cost of the settlement for victims. It has emerged that only €123million ($161 million) has been paid thus far.

In the past there were two separate financial agreements between the State and religious orders in Ireland, the first in 2002 for €128million ($168 million) and the second in 2009 for €552million ($725 million).

Despite the initial agreed amount, the total pay out from the 2002 agreement amounted to around €1.2billion ($1.5 billion).

The Government then renegotiated the 2009 settlement following the revelations of the Ryan Report which detailed child abuse in religious state-run institutions.

Through the 2009 deal religious orders were due to contribute €349million ($458 million) in cash and property, however to date only €20m ($26 million) has been handed over and no property has been transferred.

Speaking about the figures, Labour Education spokesman Ruairi Quinn said the public would be disappointed by the slow pace of payments.

"I hope that this does not represent an attempt by the religious congregations to renege on the agreement.

"The Government must now insist the pace of payments and transfers is accelerated, particularly given the horrendous economic problems we are facing," he told the Irish Independent.

The Ryan Report revealed details of rampant child sex abuse and beatings by both nuns and priests over almost a 40-year period in educational institutions throughout Ireland.

The Government set up the Residential Institutions Redress Board to deal with and process compensation claims from victims. To date it has processed more than 14,000 cases.

READ MORE- Ryan Report on clerical child sex abuse in Ireland reaches one-year milestone