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Ferris Questions Greencore’s Development Plans

16 January, 2007

The Sinn Féin spokesperson on Agriculture, Martin Ferris TD, has questioned whether Greencore can proceed with its plans for the former sugar factory sites at Mallow and Carlow and draw down the money awarded to it under the EU compensation package for the sugar industry.

Deputy Ferris has raised this in the context of a reply last week from the EU Commission to a question placed by MEP Mary Lou McDonald who asked if the Commission was aware that Greencore owed its former employees €4.4m in redundancy payments. The Commission stated that " - all obligations linked to the restructuring plan, such as the redundancy arrangements for the workers" must be met if the company is to receive the payment.

Deputy Ferris said, "It is quite clear from the reply to Mary Lou's question, that Greencore has not met its obligations to its former workers, and that it is therefore not entitled to draw down the money granted to it under the compensation package.

"When it is considered that Greencore owes its workers €4.4m and that it stands to earn €146m in compensation, the pure greed that is at work here can be clearly seen. Not only that, but the company also stands to make massive profits from the asset stripping of this former successful state enterprise through speculation in the property market. Once again I call on the Government to intervene to freeze all payments to Greencore and to prevent them going ahead with their property development, until the redundancy issue is properly addressed." ENDS

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