Flanagan calls for Crown Estates assets transfer to Executive
Sinn Féin Enterprise Spokesperson, Phil Flanagan MLA (Fermanagh/S.Tyrone) has called for transfer of all responsibility for the Crown Estate inventory to the Executive, so that local communities can benefit from the substantial benefits from the offshore renewable energy opportunities being exploited on our doorsteps. Mr Flanagan was commenting following an eventorganised by Invest NI and The Crown Estate on the potential of the offshore renewable energy sector.
Phil Flanagan said:
“While I share Minister Foster’s enthusiasm in promoting the opportunities available in the offshore renewable energy sector I believe that there would be much more benefit to our economy if the Executive negotiated transfer of all responsibility for licencing these projects from Crown Estates to the Assembly.
“The Minister highlights the ‘opportunities in the Irish Sea region alone are currently valued in excess of £17billion for areas under licence from The Crown Estate’. Can the Minister inform us as to the potential revenue that will accrue to Crown Estates through the issuing of these licences, revenue that will go directly to the British Treasury instead of directly into projects that would benefit local communities?
“What percentage of any grants allocated to successful bidders will be funded by Crown Estates?
“While I would join with the Minister in encouraging local businesses to explore opportunities in the supply chain either on their own or in collaboration with others, I believe that all the people could benefit substantially if the licences were issued by the Executive and the revenue raised used to alleviate the effects of the Tory cuts on Health, Education, Roads and Transport etc.
“Full transfer of responsibility for all Crown Estate assets here to the Executive would give the people of this Region control over how public assets are used, rather than leaving decisions that could deliver beneficial outcomes for our economy to an unelected quango."