I propose to take Questions Nos. 751 and 752 together.
My Department has not availed of any external services or professional advice in the board membership appointment process. I announced new procedures for appointment to boards in April 2011 and all subsequent appointments have followed these procedures. They include an open invitation for expressions of interest in serving on the board of any of the agencies under the remit of my Department. This invitation was renewed in January 2013.
In inviting applications, I have sought able candidates with experience or qualifications in finance (including audit capability and/or project assessment), law, corporate governance, marketing, IT, or with experience relevant to the transport, tourism and sports sectors. I stated clearly that, given the importance of ensuring the right mix of skills and experience on every board, appointments would not necessarily be confined to those who had made such an expression of interest. I may also decide from time to time not to fill all existing vacancies. I have received over 500 expressions of interest to date from which over 65 have been appointed. Details of all appointments and vacancies are published on http://dttas.ie/corporate/english/state-board-membership-and-approved-fees.