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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 20 May 1969

Vol. 240 No. 9

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Cost of Living Index.


asked the Taoiseach the cost of living index at the latest available date; and the reasons for the increase over the last year.

The Consumer Price Index (base August 1953=100) was 168.1 at mid-February, 1969, and 157.5 at mid-February, 1968. With your permission, Sir, I propose to circulate in the Official Report a statement giving the points increase attributable to each commodity group and to the principal constituent items.

Following is the statement:

Points increase in the Consumer Price Index (base August 1953 = 100) between mid-February, 1968 and mid-February, 1969, attributable to each commodity group and to the principal constituent items.

Commodity Group and item

Points increase


+ 2.83


+ 0.46

Potatoes (corrected for seasonality)

+ 0.42

Eggs (corrected for seasonality)

+ 0.41


+ 0.20


+ 0.19


+ 0.15


+ 0.38

Fuel and Light

+ 0.48


+ 1.10

Rent and rates of rented dwellings.

+ 0.73

Repairs and decorations of all dwellings

+ 0.19

Rates of owner occupied dwellings

+ 0.18


+ 5.84

Alcoholic drink

+ 1.43

Cigarettes and tobacco

+ 1.27

Papers and magazines

+ 0.52

Public transport

+ 0.49

Motor cars

+ 0.30

Is the Taoiseach aware of the promises made in the past by our present President and by Deputy Lemass when he was Taoiseach and Leader of the Fianna Fáil Party that they would not dare to increase the cost of living and especially the cost of the necessaries of life on the poor? What answer have the Government now, when the cost of living has increased by so much in the past ten years and even in the past year?

I never heard my two predecessors saying any such thing.

What we regard as important is to improve the standard of living of our people and we are doing that.


Hear, hear.

For the same number of people.

For more people.

Children and old people.

Is the Taoiseach aware that on the same night the President spoke in Belmullet and the Taoiseach spoke in Dungarvan, and both of them said the same thing: not to believe Fine Gael; and that they had no intention of increasing the cost of living or increasing the price of bread, tea, butter and sugar, which are such important items in the diet of the poor? Will the Taoiseach deny that both of them said that?

The Deputy has got it wrong. They said they would not take off the subsidies.

Will the Deputy let me answer? He will find himself running out of after Mass speeches——

Never mind the after Mass speeches. Will the Taoiseach deny that the President said that? Of course, the Taoiseach will deny it, but he said it.

The question relates to last year. Question No. 10.