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EU Commission reply shows Water Charges will increase - Doherty

20 March, 2015 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin’s Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has said a reply received by Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy from the EU Commission shows why water charges must be defeated now or will increase in time.

Deputy Doherty said:

“In a reply to Matt Carthy MEP the EU Commission have said that no other country provides a universal payment to offset the cost of water, no other country subsidises water companies by paying their local rates and that flat fees are extremely rare. The answer clearly points to unease in Brussels that the government’s climb down on charges has created an unsustainable half-baked system.”

“The solution is the dropping of water charges and the dismantling of the Irish Water corporate monster now.  Otherwise, it is my view the government will increase water charges to satisfy the Commission’s demands once they are seen to have bedded down. Twice already in reports the EU has said it is concerned that Irish Water will fail the market corporation test. The reply to Matt Carthy MEP represents another indication that in time water charges will have to be increased.”

“Despite the government commitment that the charges are fixed until 2018 I believe the EU will continue to increases the pressure to have water charges brought into line with the EU’s logic of full cost recovery sooner rather than later. I urge everybody who is opposed to water charges to continue the campaign and to let the government and the EU know that the Irish people don’t want water charges under the current model or the inevitable more costly model the EU will try to force upon the State sooner or later.” 

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