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Reilly welcomes MEPS’ rejection of austerity link to structural funds

12 July, 2012

Sinn Féin’s EU spokesperson has welcomed the removal by MEPs of the austerity-rules link to the upcoming round of structural funds, the so-called macro-economic conditionality.

“I am happy that, at this early stage of negotiations, MEPs have stood up for the solidarity aspects of the structural funds monies. What was proposed was to empower the EU to suspend structural funds to countries that were in economic stress and not hitting targets similar to those in the Austerity Treaty. Regions struggling to meet economic targets are the ones most in need of solidarity - this idea has potentially disastrous consequences.

“This would have been an extraordinarily backward step. Projects up and down this island including peace-building projects depend on the certainty that comes with EU part-funding. The idea that these projects could have their funds suspended because of economic matters behind their control is a very dangerous one.

“I now call upon the Irish government to resist any attempt to re-insert this idea during the forthcoming legislative regulations.”

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