Written Answers. - Departmental Funding.

Seymour Crawford


115 Mr. Crawford asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs if he will have sufficient funds in his own Department or from Government in general to provide matching funding where necessary in order that INTERREG and other cross-Border funding can be fully drawn down in 2003 and up to 2006; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3524/03]

The allocation for 2003 in respect of rural development cross-Border programmes is €13.8 million. This includes LEADER and the rural development measures in Peace II and INTERREG III. These programmes are co-funded with the EU and with the exception of Peace II, which expires in 2004, will run to 2006 with the bulk of expenditure expected in the second half of the programmes i.e. 2004-06. I am satisfied that the 2003 allocations are sufficient to meet this years commitments and I intend that sufficient match funding will be provided for the remaining years of these programmes.

The peace programme 2000-04 was approved by the European Commission in 2001 and recognises that there is a continued need to promote barriers to reconciliation and to break down community divisions within both jurisdictions and between North and South. Area Development Management Limited, ADM, and Combat Poverty Agency, CPA, manage a number of the priority actions of the programme on behalf of my Department. I am satisfied that there is sufficient funding in my Department's Vote to meet commitments by ADM Limited and CPA to the programme in 2003 and I intend to seek sufficient matching funding for 2004.