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Government privatisation agenda decreases Dublin's competitiveness - McDonald

18 June, 2007

In response to the Mercer Human Resource Consulting report listing Dublin as the sixteenth most expensive city in the world Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald has slammed Fianna Fáil for their inaction in addressing the city’s spiraling cost of living.

Speaking from Strasburg  Ms McDonald said:

“Over the last number of months Fianna Fáil has trumpeted itself as the best “Managers’ of the country’s economy. However as this latest report on the cost of living proves we are, particularly in Dublin, in an extremely precarious position economically as the cost of living continues to increase year on year.

“We were promised that the 2002 Planning and Development Act would make buying a home more accessible particularly for those on lower incomes. Yet over 12,000 families in the city remain on the social housing waiting list.

“The city’s public transport system remains one of the lowest publicly funded in Europe, a statistic starkly illustrated by inadequate number of buses in the Bus Átha Cliath fleet which leaves the city under serviced and car dependent.

“Nurses, gardaí, teachers, civil servants, and public transport workers cannot afford to live in the city which is an absurd situation as these are not only the city’s citizens but are vital to the delivery of essential public services.

“We were assured by government ministers that the removal of the Groceries Order would bring down the cost of food, this reduction has not materialised.

“Workers are regularly lectured by government on the need to be more productive and business to increase competitiveness. Yet Fianna Fáil as the central component in the new and outgoing coalition governments is the real culprit by its refusal to deliver responsible social planning. 

"Sinn Féin calls on the government to amend the Planning and Development Act so as to remove the developers get out clause which severely depletes the annual social and affordable housing unit output. The Dublin Bus fleet needs to be substantially increased with publicly funded buses.

“Fianna Fáil’s privitisation agenda of the last ten years has not augmented Dublin’s economy. A new direction for the city is needed. Sinn Féin will continue to campaign for public services, affordable housing and economic innovation for Dublin.” CRÍOCH

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