Sinn Féin - On Your Side

CSO statistics show unemployment still a problem in border region

20 November, 2003

Speaking following the release today of CSO statistics on employment, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise and Employment, Arthur Morgan T.D. said the statistics highlighted the ongoing unemployment problems which exist in border counties.

Deputy Morgan said: "Four out of the five towns with the highest unemployment rates are to be found in border counties. These statistics show that the position which prevailed over the last three decades is continuing in these border regions.

"That Carndonagh, Carrick-on-Suir, Castleblayney and Dundalk all have a rate of unemployment of a least 19% is an indictment of the coalition government, particularly coming off the back of the economic boom of recent years. This region has been passed over by successive governments for far too long. We need to see increased investment in infrastructure along with Government support for the development of indigenous industries in the border region.

"The Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, An Tanaiste Mary Harney T.D. is failing to address the needs of the border region and people are faced with growing job losses ? 140 jobs are to at Quantum peripheral products in Dundalk in the new year while Fruit of the Loom is seeking a further 26 redundancies at its plant in Buncrana, Co. Donegal. Clearly the promised peace dividend following the Good Friday Agreement, in terms of economic development and regeneration, has not penetrated through to these border regions. We need to see a strategy that aims to decentralise job creation and give particular focus to communities on both sides of the border who have suffered greatly because of its existence." ENDS

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