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Single all-Ireland energy market needed

22 November, 2004

Sinn Féin Economy Spokesperson, national chairperson Mitchel McLaughlin has said that there must be greater urgency in the development of the single all-Ireland energy market.

Mr McLaughlin said:

"Sinn Féin believe that a single all-Ireland energy market has the potential to deliver real gains for small and medium enterprises and industry as well as being an important element in the battle to eradicate fuel poverty.

"The key targets need to prioritise reducing energy costs and the related issues of interconnection and access. These are vital if we are to achieve an energy market that is secure, diverse, efficient and environmentally sustainable and that can deliver real gains by significantly reducing cost.

"It is important that there will now be grater interconnector capacity but there needs to be a greater urgency in removing the remaining barriers to the single energy market.

"There is compelling evidence for greater harmonisation and deeper co-operation across many other areas. Sinn Fein believe that a developing all-Ireland agenda has the potential to deliver real benefits. In terms of efficiency and effectiveness there are many clear arguments for developing an all-Ireland approach. Many within the business, health, education and social sectors are already looking at Ireland as a whole.

"Sinn Féin believe that the future of many economic sectors can benefit from an all-Ireland approach, while in others such as agriculture it is vital." ENDS

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