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Colreavy condemns plans to sell Bord Gáis Energy

18 September, 2013 - by Michael Colreavy TD

Deputy Michael Colreavy, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, has condemned government’s move to sell off Bord Gáis Energy.

Speaking during the Gas Regulation Bill in the Dáil chamber Deputy Colreavy said:

“It is not without irony that the Gas Regulation Bill is introduced by a Labour minister. It was just over one year ago, at a Labour Party conference, that Labour members gave a resounding message to their party leadership that they would not accept the sale of state assets.

“And yet we find ourselves here in 2013 with a Labour minister introducing a bill to sell off Bord Gáis Energy. If I were an ordinary member of the Labour party I would feel disheartened and disillusioned by the political process when my own party leaders do not listen to the policies put forward at their own party conference.

“In 2012 Bord Gáis Energy had a gross operating profit of €79.4 million compared to €44.3 million in 2011. The company is by far the biggest player in the domestic gas market at present with a 60.97% market share in June 2013.

“The question must be asked as to why the government are selling off such a successful company. Bord Gáis Energy is hardly a millstone around the neck of taxpayers, in fact is returning profit to the state. Therefore the sale of Bord Gáis Energy can only be described as an ideological move, one which is fuelled by the austerity agenda of the Troika.

“However, there are clear winners from these policies. Private companies have been able to scoop up public assets in a crisis of low prices and banks involved in reckless lending have been paid back at citizens’ expense.

“The corporate elite are using the pretext of the crisis to hammer away at hard earned rights and benefits of workers and citizens that have been gained over the past number of decades. The sale of Bord Gáis Energy forms just another part in this long list of attacks on public goods.”

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