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All-Ireland economic study an important first step - de Brún

26 October, 2006

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has today described a report which endorses all-Ireland economic activity as an important first step and stressed the need for positive and pro-active steps to move this agenda forward. Ms de Brún said that Sinn Féin has been to the forefront of work towards bringing about an all-Ireland economy.

Speaking today Ms de Brún said:

"Sinn Féin has long called for the establishment of an all-Ireland economy. Not only because we are Irish republicans, but also because it makes practical sense to establish an integrated approach to issues such as energy, spatial planning, transport, health and education on this small island.

"As I made clear at a conference on the EU and Irish reunification in the European Parliament in Brussels last week, the border has constrained economic activity, exacerbated problems of economic disadvantage, distorted and disrupted infrastructural development, and held back the growth of new firms. Partition has meant that opportunities for economic development have been squandered and has led to a lack of integration in agriculture, tourism, energy and telecommunications. It has also led to lost potential in terms of the possibility of joint working in R&D, markets, education and training.

"It is imperative that both governments work to drive forward this agenda in the time ahead, and that they involve the greatest possible range of stakeholders. We must build momentum in all-Ireland economic activity to maximise our economic potential. A far greater level of joined up thinking and action is needed if we are to meet the challenges ahead." ENDS

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