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Sinn Féin's Doherty warns cuts in EU funding will be detrimental to the border regions

24 February, 2004

Sinn Féin North West EU candidate and Spokesperson Pearse Doherty, has today expressed deep concern after the European Commission indicated that there would be a significant reduction in Structural Funding for Ireland. The next phase of the funding scheme will run from 2007- 2013, and the border, Midlands and Western Regions will be most affected.

Speaking today, Mr Doherty said:

"Sinn Féin is concerned that from 2007, the European Commission has signaled that Structural Funds will be significantly reduced for the North West and border Regions. Such a reduction in funding will be detrimental to the border and North West regions, which still suffers from poor infrastructure, lower levels of inward investment and a lack of high speed internet access to name a few, in comparison to other regions.

"We are also concerned that some states, led by France and Germany want to cut the EU budget even further. This proposal would almost certainly see funding cease completely. Such a scenario could see a reversal of the effects of past funding, leading to a further decline in the

socio-economic conditions within the region" ENDS

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