June 14, 2023
Government must ensure addition of West and Northwest to TEN-T Core Network – MacManus

Government must ensure addition of West and Northwest to TEN-T Core Network – MacManus

Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus has called on the Government to ensure the addition of the Atlantic Corridor to the TEN-T Core Network. The Midlands Northwest representative was speaking following a vote in the European Parliament on a report on large transport infrastructure projects in the EU, relating to the TEN-T Network.

MEP MacManus said:

“I voted in favour of this report, which highlights the key role of Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) funding in large infrastructure projects, funding which is only available to infrastructure included on the TEN-T Network.”

“Over the 2007-2020 period, the EU budget allocated over €109 billion to transport infrastructure projects on the TEN-T network. It is a vital source of funding for these projects and the Irish Government must take full advantage of it.”

“Therefore it is very disappointing that the Irish Government has refused to reintroduce the west and northwest of Ireland to the TEN-T Core Network, in particular the Western Rail Corridor.”

“Changes to the TEN-T Network must be endorsed by the Government of the member state concerned, and the Irish Government have refused to endorse the addition of the Western Rail Corridor to the TEN-T Network until the publication of the all-island rail review.”

“This review has been delayed indefinitely due to the absence of an Executive in the north, though it has been widely reported that the review will recommend the partial reopening of the Western Rail Corridor between Athenry and Claremorris and the development of a railway between Letterkenny and Derry. My fear is that the Government intend to use the absence of European funding as an excuse not to invest in these rail lines.”

“The west and northwest of Ireland has been ranked 219th out of 234 European regions in terms of infrastructure in a recent EU report. If we are to address regional imbalance, attract investment and create high quality jobs, we desperately need investment in infrastructure, particularly transport infrastructure.”

“Minister Eamon Ryan must urgently ensure that the west of Ireland is restored to the TEN-T Core Network to ensure that our communities can fully benefit from European investment in the time ahead.”  ENDS

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