Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Equal Pay.

24.

asked the Minister for Finance the present position regarding the Interim Report on Equal Pay which was presented to him over six months ago by the Commission on the Status of Women; whether the Government intend to accept and implement the recommendations contained therein; and, if so, when.

Considerable progress has been made by Departments in the examination of the Interim Report of the Commission on the Status of Women. When this examination is completed, the recommendations will be considered by the Government. I am not yet in a position to say when the Government's decisions will be announced.

Having regard to the obligations that we will have if we enter the EEC to implement the principles enunciated in this report, will the Government ensure that consideration of this matter is expedited and that the recommendations will be implemented as soon as possible?

As the Deputy has pointed out, the obligations of EEC entry mean that we are already committed to equal pay by 1977. However, I do not think the Government should commit themselves on the report until the employer/labour conference has considered the question of equal pay as the report recommends. In fact, the conference is studying the matter at present.