Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Ceisteanna (27, 28)

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

30 Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the extent to which employment levels throughout the transport, tourism and sport sectors have fluctuated in each of the past five years to date; the extent to which it has been possible to identify those areas within the sectors most likely to respond to positive influences resulting in growth and job creation in the future; the extent to which this can be quantified in job numbers; the extent to which it has been found possible to formulate an integrated plan whereby the strengths in the tourism, transport and sports sectors can be magnified with resultant economic benefit to the wider community; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22989/12]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

228 Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the extent to which air, road and sea transport can be integrated to present the best possible opportunities for economic recovery and the provision of the widest possible scale and quality of service to the general public and tourism sectors; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23353/12]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 30 and 228 together.

The Action Plan for Jobs 2012 sets out an integrated Government approach to job creation with particular emphasis on tourism as one key area for the generation of employment. Transport demand on the other hand is primarily derived from the outputs of the other economic sectors. In addition to directly generated jobs on transport projects, increased employment in the transport sector will flow from increased economic activity generally.

The main actions relating to these sectors in the Plan and in the Government's earlier 2011 Jobs Initiative are:

The targeting by Fáilte Ireland of capital grants from the €21 million fund available to it in 2012 to develop new and to upgrade existing tourism attractions and to support training and building business capability;

Important initiatives to stimulate visitor numbers, including the reduced VAT rate of 9% on certain tourism and hospitality services;

Preparations for "The Gathering Ireland 2013" initiative which aims to attract an additional 325,000 visitors to Ireland in 2013;

Use of the €40 million Tourism Marketing Fund available in 2012 to focus on the four core source markets of Great Britain, the United States, Germany and France;

Participation in key trade missions overseas to promote tourism;

The development of niche tourism activities and products where Ireland has a comparative advantage;

Funding for two new rounds of Sports Capital funding with the first in 2012 to enhance modest sporting facilities throughout the country;

Approval of a strategy for the incremental development of the National Sports Campus;

Selected road and public transport projects with a clear impact on economic development, competitiveness and market access which include the linking of the two LUAS lines, investing in new buses and the maintenance of the road network;

Review of public transport regulation to identify the potential to reduce costs; and

The continuing offer to abolish the remaining €3 travel tax subject to acceptable commitments from the carriers to additional inbound flights to Ireland.

Statistics relating to employment levels in the Transport and Tourism sectors can be found on the CSO website http://www.cso.ie/en/statistics/labourmarket/principalstatistics/. Sports statistics are not available from the CSO. I understand that Fáilte Ireland also produce statistics oftheir own on their website http://www.failteireland.ie/Research-Statistics/Current-Tourism-Performance.