Empty Údarás properties hold potential for job creation in Gaeltacht areas – Quinlivan
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Business, Enterprise, and Innovation Maurice Quinlivan TD today said that the 86 empty Údarás na Gaeltachta properties across the country hold great potential for job creation in Gaeltacht areas and called on the Minister for Business Heather Humphreys to facilitate better cooperation between job creation agencies to ensure Gaeltacht areas attract more indigenous businesses and foreign direct investment.
Speaking today, Teachta Quinlivan said:
“Information I recently received today from Údarás na Gaeltachta show that 86 of their properties across the country are currently vacant, with one quarter of these units empty since 2009 or before.
“In one case, an Údarás premises in Béal an Mhuirthead in County Mayo has been lying empty for 20 years.
“For a business unit to be empty since 1999 is totally unacceptable. Surely Údarás could have found some use for it, for example to allow a start-up business, community group or charity use the premises for free until a paying tenant could be found.
“These figures show Donegal is worst affected, with 41 units or 23% of all Údarás’s units in the county currently vacant, half of these idle for 5 years or more.
“Many of these Údarás na Gaeltachta properties are located in rural areas, predominantly in the west of Ireland. These are areas that are in need of substantial investment and focus from the government to ensure local people have the opportunity to remain, live and work in their own communities.
“These properties hold great potential for job creation in Gaeltacht areas and I am calling on the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation to facilitate better cooperation between the IDA, Enterprise Ireland and Údarás na Gaeltachta to ensure all of their clients are made aware of the units and financial assistance each of the agencies have to offer.
“It is essential we attract more indigenous businesses and foreign direct investment to these regions and utilise these properties.
“Ensuring people from Gaeltacht regions are able to stay, live, and work in their home communities is also vital in protecting and growing the use of our native language.”