Ibec- the group that represents Irish business- today welcomed the launch of the consultation for the National Planning Framework and said that business would play its part in ensuring its success.
Speaking after the launch of the Ireland 2040 plan consultation, Fergal O' Brien, Ibec's Director of Policy and Public Affairs, stated: " The Irish economy is in recovery mode, but not all parts of the country are benefitting equally. The new National Planning Framework has the capacity to address this imbalance and it is an essential policy component for the development of both our cities and regions. The new Framework must be underpinned by increased State investment in transport, broadband, water services, health and education infrastructure across all regions. Not only should public capital be increased for these infrastructure projects, but the time-frames for their roll out is also critical. We must be able to deliver key projects on time. An all-Ireland approach to planning and infrastructure would also assist in identifying shared opportunities and challenges to critical infrastructure plans and make the entire process more efficient. Ibec supports the continued coordination between the Irish and Northern-Irish Governments on the development of these plans."
"Right now, Ireland's capital investment expenditure is the lowest in the EU, but we have Europe's fastest growing population. When it comes to infrastructure, Ireland is significantly lagging behind its competitors in terms of sustainability, and the cost of doing business. The new Framework, if delivered correctly and in context of the Public Capital Investment Programme, could illustrate to the international community Ireland's long term investment and comprehensive approach to infrastructure planning and delivery. This would drive confidence in Ireland as a location for business investment. It would also have the knock on effect of increasing productivity, employment opportunities, and improved standards of living by reducing transport costs, connecting regions to cities, and attracting more private sector investment."
"With the right plan, the whole island of Ireland can become a dynamic concentration of productivity, innovation, and creativity, providing opportunities for business and better quality of life to residents."