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Russia/Ukraine gas dispute highlights need for Irish control of our own natural resources

5 January, 2006

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Natural Resources, Martin Ferris TD has said that the Russia/Ukraine gas dispute has highlighted in a very dramatic way the urgent need to address the exploitation of our own gas and oil resources.

Deputy Ferris said, "As the Russia/Ukraine gas dispute sent shock waves across the EU it is very clear that the issue of exploiting natural resources and the supply of energy is coming increasingly to the fore for citizens right across the Union.

"It also serves as a timely reminder for us here in Ireland of the dangers of allowing private companies unfettered access to and control of existing resources.

"As things stand the control of the Corrib gas field has been given away by the Fianna Fáil and the PDs to Shell in a deal which could only be described as an outrageous giveaway. And that deal also insured that Shell would be able protect from public scrutiny the exact nature of the gas find off the Mayo coast, in terms of volume and potential value.

"Sinn Féin maintains that control of all natural resources should remain under the control of the Irish people. The resources extracted should be used for the benefit of all the people.

"The Corrib Gas giveaway was a stinking deal which involved at least one corrupt Government minister and should be scrapped." ENDS

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