Wednesday, 1 November 2006

Ceisteanna (211, 212, 213, 214)

Marian Harkin

Ceist:

283 Ms Harkin asked the Minister for Finance the profile, the expenditure, and expenditure versus profile in the Border Midland Western region in the National Development Plan, to June 2006. [35296/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Marian Harkin

Ceist:

284 Ms Harkin asked the Minister for Finance the amount of extra expenditure, above that committed in the National Development Plan, spent in the Border Midland Western region to June 2006. [35297/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Marian Harkin

Ceist:

285 Ms Harkin asked the Minister for Finance the profile, the expenditure, and expenditure versus profile in the southern and eastern region in the National Development Plan to June 2006. [35298/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Marian Harkin

Ceist:

286 Ms Harkin asked the Minister for Finance the amount of extra expenditure above that committed in the National Development Plan spent in the southern and eastern region to June 2006. [35299/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 283 to 286, inclusive, together.

The National Development Plan/Community Support Framework (NDP/CSF) 2000-2006 is implemented through seven Operational Programmes (OPs). The most recent expenditure data reported to the Operational Programmes Monitoring Committees at their Autumn 2006 meetings held during week beginning 23rd October relates to the period January 2000 to the end June 2006.

In comparing the expenditure versus original profile, it is important to note that significant expenditure, particularly Exchequer expenditure, takes place in the latter half of the year. The position will become clearer when data is available for the full calendar year at the Spring 2007 Monitoring Committees scheduled to take place in April 2007.

The House will be aware of the general state of play in relation to expenditure in the BMW region from previous debates and questions on this issue. The figures reported at the recent Monitoring Committee meetings indicate that some €13.2 billion or 78% of the total original forecast for expenditure (Exchequer, EU and private) and €11.1 billion or 82% of forecast Exchequer expenditure had been incurred by the end of June 2006. This is a healthy implementation rate in view of the slow start up in some areas at the very beginning, the relatively disappointing response in certain demand led schemes and the fact that Exchequer spending in relation to the Structural Fund OPs for the 2000-2006 period will in fact continue up to 2008.

With regard to the Southern and Eastern (S&E) region, the figures reported indicate that some €35.1 billion or 97% of the total original forecast for expenditure (Exchequer, EU and private) and €30.2 billion or 108% of forecast Exchequer expenditure had been incurred in the S&E region by the end of June 2006. This means that the Exchequer contribution to the S&E region under the NDP had already exceeded its original target by €2.28 billion to the end of June 2006.