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Ferris commends Sarkozy for taking tough line with Mandelson

3 July, 2008 - by Martin Ferris TD

Speaking at today's Oireachtas Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Committee following a presentation made by the IFA on the current round of WTO negotiations and its implications for Irish farming industry, Sinn Féin TD Martin Ferris commended EU President Sarkozy for his tough line with Peter Mandelson and noted that it is incumbent on all stakeholders to ensure the best possible deal was achieved for Irish farmers.

Deputy Ferris said:

"It is incumbent on the Irish government, political opposition, the farming community and all agricultural representative groups to keep up the pressure in Ireland and within the EU institutions to protect the future of Irish and European farming.

"Peter Mandelson's gung-ho approach to the negotiations has served only to alienate farming communities across the EU and create uncertainty in an industry already under severe pressure. I commend President Sarkozy for taking a firm line with the Mandelson from the outset of the French Presidency. This needs to continue.

"A strong EU Presidency will serve an essential counterbalance to the EU Commission during the talks. President Barroso supports Mandelson, who acts on behalf of the Commission and has just this week described his work to date as '"excellent"." ENDS

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