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Morgan slams Fine Gael privatisation proposals

27 March, 2009


Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD described proposals from Fine Gael to sell off Bord Gáis, ESB International and Aer Rianta International as reckless behaviour.  He said Fine Gael have shown that they are no different from Fianna Fáil accusing them of learning nothing from Ireland’s disastrous experience of privatisation which has helped to create the current economic crisis.

Deputy Morgan said, “The Fine Gael party have shown with their economic proposals that they are no different to Fianna Fáil and are wedded to the misguided policy of privatisation.  They have learned nothing from Ireland’s disastrous experience of privatisation which has helped to lead us into the current economic crisis.

“The claim that they will not repeat the mistake Eircom is immediately rubbished with proposals to sell off Bord Gáis, ESB International and Aer Rianta International.  These are all profitable state companies with strategic importance to the economic development of the state.  To be advocating the sale of these very valuable state assets at a time when the price would be at rock bottom exposes immature economic thinking.

“These proposals are reckless in the extreme.  They are aimed at making short term gains at serious risk to the economy and at a longer term and much larger loss to consumers and the state.  Now is not the time for short term stop gap measures.  What is required is strategic thinking with a vision to bring about long term sustainable economic growth.

“The lessons need to be learned from the disastrous privatisations of Eircom and Aer Lingus.  We must also learn the lesson from Enron’s disastrous privatisation of California’s electricity sector and the implications it had for California’s economy.

“Unfortunately at a time when the Country requires new thinking and innovative ideas it seems all Fine Gael can come up with is more of the same.” ENDS

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