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Dáil Éireann debate -
Wednesday, 30 Apr 1969

Vol. 240 No. 2

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Unemployed in South-West Cork.


asked the Taoiseach the number registered as unemployed in each of the exchanges in the constituency of south-west Cork; and what proposals he has for providing employment for these people.

The following is the number of persons on the live register at each of the local employment offices concerned at the latest available date, namely, the 18th April, 1969:















One of the main aims of the Government's agricultural policy is to maintain the maximum number on the land consistent with social and economic progress, and the various Government measures in support of agriculture—an up-to-date outline of which is contained in the section on western development in the Third Programme for Economic and Social Development —are of particular benefit to south-west Cork. One of the five fishing harbours being provided under our fishery development scheme is Castletownbere.

As announced yesterday, a new pilot development area to be set up under the aegis of the West Cork Development Team is expected to bring invaluable benefits to the area.

Commitments to date from the special Regional Development Fund set up by the Government in 1967 include, for the west Cork area, assistance towards the development of a vegetable co-operative giving employment to approximately 100 workers and involving 400 local growers, and the provision of a cable-car from the mainland to Dursey Island to provide transport for the islanders and for tourists.

The Government provides valuable facilities through the Industrial Development Authority to encourage the establishment and development of industries. At present, there are 16 proposals before the authority for new industries, or extension of existing ones, in south-west Cork.

In regard to tourism, there are 12 proposals for new hotels in the area at a capital investment of over £800,000. Apart from the direct labour content of the construction work, the hotels— when open—are expected to provide additional employment for about 300.

In relation to the increase in unemployment in Bantry, is this not due to the completion of the Whiddy oil terminal project and is it not true that this will be more than compensated for by the new industries that are going to Bantry?

There is some increase in the unemployment content at Bantry as it appears on the employment register. It is considered to be due to the laying-off of workers on completion or near completion of the terminal at Bantry. I am more than confident that the proposals, both industry-wise and tourist-wise, that are now in the pipeline will more than offset any decline. In fact, they will take up much of the unemployment that is there now.

Is not this industrial bonanza in West Cork due to the initiative and enterprise of the Fianna Fáil Government?

I was too shy to say that myself.