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Murphy calls on Finance Minister to stand up to Osborne

29 November, 2011

Sinn Féin Economy Spokesperson, Conor Murphy has called on Finance Minister, Sammy Wilson to take a robust stance against any suggestion that measures that may be taken by British Chancellor, George Osborne to stimulate the British economy will in any way impact negatively on the Executive’s budget.

Conor Murphy said:

“Sammy Wilson’s speculation that measures expected to be taken by George Osborne to stimulate the British economy could cost the Executive block grant another £130 to £150million must be resisted. This is just the latest example of the negative impact of the Executive not having control of its own economic levers.

“The North’s economy has for too long been constrained by dependence on decisions by British Chancellors. We need to break that dependency by transferring maximum fiscal powers to the Executive. While others are fearful of the implications of demanding fiscal powers Sinn Féin is of the opinion that it is only by taking control of our own economic and political futures that we will be able to design a made for purpose economic strategy to build an indigenous economy reflecting the needs of the island of Ireland and not of Britain.

 We believe that this can best be achieved by building a strong all-Ireland economy and eliminating waste and duplication.

The British Chancellor will always act in the best interests of Britain. He did not ask us what we thought before cutting £4billion from our budget and as we stated at that time if circumstances in Britain dictate that he would cut another £4billion and it would not cost him a thought. Sammy Wilson’s expectations would seem to confirm our analysis. There are no votes for the Tories here. Therefore the sooner we succeed in having maximum powers transferred into local hands the sooner we can start designing our own fiscal structures and plan our own programmes to address the needs of the people here.

“Sammy Wilson needs to accept that when the British Chancellor insists on parity it only applies when it comes to cuts. His proposed stimulus package will not be predicated on parity. Remember we were promised a paper on rebalancing our economy by David Cameron during the election campaign. We are still waiting on it! CRÍOCH

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