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Varadkar, Leo

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.

Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí - Leaders' Questions

I thank the Deputy. He is correct to say Brexit, particularly a no-deal Brexit, will be damaging for our economy. However, it is worth noting the ESRI projections released this morning. The ESRI...More Button

Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí - Leaders' Questions (Continued)

Firms across the country are preparing for Brexit. Some 85% of Enterprise Ireland firms have a Brexit plan already. That is important because Enterprise Ireland firms are the firms that are doing...More Button

Some 85% of them have a Brexit plan in place already. Generally speaking, IDA firms know what they are doing. They are the multinationals which invest here in Ireland. We need to improve prepare...More Button

On the Deputy's question about customs officials, we have a panel of 3,000 people who have applied to be customs officials. A minimum of 200 will be in place in March but that can be increased t...More Button

In terms of making information public, we are very happy to give the Deputy full briefings and information through the Brexit stakeholders' group. We will publish plans, but it must be borne in ...More Button

Rosslare will need infrastructural investment, as will Dublin Port and Dublin Airport.More Button

We will publish what we can.More Button

The Deputy correctly quoted what I said in December on the joint report and on the agreement we struck between the EU and the UK last December. I also said that we had to be vigilant and that we w...More Button

I do not believe that now is the time for us to start talking about Border polls. I understand the perspective of the Deputy's party, which is committed to the territorial unity of this island. ...More Button

We are trying to avoid a scenario in which the UK, including Northern Ireland, crashes out of the EU. That means ratifying the withdrawal agreement which the EU and the UK Government agreed. Twen...More Button

The second best thing Deputy McDonald can do is bring together the institutions that were established under the Good Friday Agreement.More Button

These are the things that Deputy McDonald can do.More Button

Rather than asking me and the Government I lead about our preparations for-----More Button

-----hypothetical scenarios, the best thing the Deputy can do is to do what she can do – take her party’s seats in Westminster, vote for the withdrawal agreement, get the Assembly meeting again and...More Button

Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí (Atógáil) - Leaders' Questions (Resumed)

I have no doubt that all Members are able to make a distinction between their personal interests and the public interest and that applies as much to people who are members of trade unions who might...More Button

I am not familiar with the particular building about which the Deputy spoke but I acknowledge we need to act once again to strengthen tenants' rights. Hundreds of thousands of people in Ireland ...More Button

The rent Bill, providing additional rights to renters and tenants, was approved by Cabinet yesterday. It has four major provisions: first, the introduction of a rent register so that people can ...More Button

Ceisteanna ó Cheannairí (Atógáil) - Leaders' Questions (Resumed) (Continued)

We think the Deputy's Bill is too extreme and designed more for publicity than policy as is so often-----More Button

I did not say that. As is so often the case with things brought forward by People Before Profit and Solidarity-----More Button

-----it is too extreme.More Button

Some landlords are abusive and bad but most landlords are just people renting out a property that they own, providing somewhere for people to live and we should not demonise landlords-----More Button

-----because we need people to rent out their properties. A reason that we are facing the problem we currently face is lack of supply. People are not willing to enter the rental market any more t...More Button

The legislation affects a property one bought ten or 20 years ago to accommodate one's kid in college, and states that one cannot live in a house that one owns-----More Button

-----and that one cannot accommodate one's own family in a house that one owns.More Button

If one is forced to sell the property and needs the money for some other reason, perhaps to pay medical bills for a relative, the fact that one cannot sell it is too extreme.More Button

We will do four things. We will legislate for a rent register so that people know the rents being paid by others in their area; we will extend the notices to quit so that people have more time to ...More Button

I guarantee that the left wing forces in this House will vote against those protections.More Button

Will Solidarity-People Before Profit vote for our Bill or not? The Deputies will not say.More Button

We have gone from a situation in Ireland where, only five or six years ago, we were in the middle of an economic and unemployment crisis. Some 15% of people were unemployed and people were being f...More Button

That did not happen by accident. A remarkable thing about Ireland's economic recovery is that we had jobs growth and a fall in unemployment almost from the start of the recovery. Most countries...More Button

Some people will just find a job on their own but others need help, support, encouragement and training. That is done through different mechanisms. Intreo is the in-house service provided by th...More Button

There is a contract. Terminating any contract with any company involves significant costs and penalties for the taxpayer. We are certainly not going to cancel any such contracts. We are enteri...More Button

I encourage anyone who has a complaint to make that complaint to the provider and if he or she is not satisfied with the response, he or she can complain to the Department of Employment Affairs a...More Button

We have the staff now. There are many staff in our Intreo offices around the country. When unemployment was three times what it is now, the Department and Government did not have the staff. That...More Button

Waiting lists for hospital procedures on hips, eyes, knees and cataracts and for angiograms have fallen every month for almost a year and half. They are now lower than they were when the Governmen...More Button

If if had been possible to take hundreds or thousands of extra staff into the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection during a period of high unemployment, what we would do with them...More Button

That is not true.More Button

Death of Former Members: Expressions of Sympathy

I am grateful for this opportunity to offer my condolences and pay tribute to two people who served this country with honour and distinction. They both helped us as a country to come to terms with...More Button

Paddy Harte was an architect of peace and reconciliation on our island, building bridges across communities. His lasting achievement is the Island of Ireland Peace Park at Messines, made possibl...More Button

In recent months, we have also paid tributes in this House to whistleblowers who stood up for the truth at great personal cost. In many ways, Monica Barnes was a political whistleblower. She wa...More Button

I feel though that if she were with us here today she would not let us get away with nice tributes without acknowledging that we have still so much more to do. We have much more to do before we ...More Button

Monica's family and friends can be proud of a true political pioneer who helped to make our country a much kinder, more modern and overall better place. More Button

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis. More Button

Death of Former Members: Expressions of Sympathy (Continued)

Please do.More Button

Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation

We have not had an opportunity to discuss this at Cabinet yet but the purpose of referring this to the joint committee was to see if there could be a political consensus on a new wording. If we ca...More Button

This is not a matter for promised legislation or the programme for Government but if the Deputy wants to put down a Topical Issue matter or a special notice question to the Minister for Housing, Pl...More Button

We will do that once it is finalised. We are happy to give the party leaders a briefing through the stakeholders group in the meantime. It cannot be finalised until mid-January because the legisl...More Button

That is a fair point. This is the Legislature that will have to enact that legislation and we will be happy to share it once it has been finalised. We can give party leaders a briefing informally...More Button

I am aware of the case and I have met with John's former partner. Unfortunately, issuing a temporary or full passport would not solve the problem. He would not be allowed to leave the UAE. It is...More Button

Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation (Continued)

It is not correct to say the tests were messed up either by the State or by the laboratories. That was true in some of the cases but we do not yet know how many. It was not true in all the cases.More Button

We know that for a fact. To answer the Deputy's substantive question, discussions are under way on that. The HSE's medicines management programme has developed a proposal that would allow women w...More Button

I do not.More Button

Tá brón orm a rá nach bhfuil an Bille ullmhaithe nó réidh ach beidh sé réidh sa bhliain úr.More Button

The Minister of State, Deputy English, and the Minister for Finance, Deputy Donohoe, are still examining this matter, which affects some developments in my constituency as well. The primary diffic...More Button

If the Deputy has an accurate cost that she can stand over, I would be happy to see it.More Button

The Minister, Deputy Regina Doherty, has done a lot of work on this matter with her colleague in the United Kingdom. I can assure people who receive UK pensions in whole or in part, or part of a U...More Button

Yes.More Button

Unfortunately, we did not have an opportunity to discuss that memo at Cabinet yesterday because we had to set aside additional time to talk about Brexit, so the memo will go to Cabinet next week.More Button

-----but it is also important that we are not too draconian either.More Button

I have to admit to, on occasion, having left my wallet at home and, therefore, having driven without my driving licence. We need to tighten up the law but we need to tighten it up in such a way th...More Button

There is a difference between the medical card scheme and the long-term illness scheme. The difficulty with the long-term illness scheme is that it does not have a statutory basis and, for that re...More Button

I refer the Deputy to the answer I gave earlier today on this very topic, except I will add one thing. If one examines the statistics, and I have not done so, although I will take a look at them, ...More Button

It is our policy that PEACE and INTERREG funding should continue and the draft proposals from the European Commission provide for PEACE II to form part of the multi-annual financial framework, MFF,...More Button

Treatment of Cancer (Advertisements) Bill 2018: First Stage

I express my strong support for the Private Member's Bill proposed by Deputy Kate O'Connell. We have seen enormous improvements in cancer care in Ireland over the past few decades with the result ...More Button

Pre-European Council Meeting: Statements

Tomorrow and Friday, I will attend a meeting of the European Council in Brussels and a meeting of the euro summit. On Thursday afternoon, we will focus on the multi-annual financial framework and ...More Button

The UK Government has postponed the planned vote on the withdrawal agreement in the House of Commons and there have been further developments this morning within the Conservative Party. As I sai...More Button

We should recall that a UK-wide backstop rather than a Northern Ireland specific one was included at the request of the UK Government. It is important to bear in mind that the United Kingdom too...More Button

Pre-European Council Meeting: Statements (Continued)

  I hope that the withdrawal agreement will be ratified by the UK Parliament and the European Parliament in due course, but the Government, in close co-operation with the EU, is continuin...More Button

Taoiseach's Meetings and Engagements

Was asked: if he will report on his planned visits abroad in the next six months.More Button

I intend to attend scheduled meetings, formal and informal, of the European Council in the coming six months, which currently include, 13 and 14 December, 21 and 22 March and on 20 and 21 June 2019...More Button

Parliamentary Questions Data

Was asked: the number of parliamentary questions his Department has processed in the past three years to date; the number of questions answered directly; the number of questions referred to bodies or agencies...More Button

My Department answered 1,656 oral and 1,442 written Parliamentary Questions from December 2015 to November 2018. All questions were answered directly.

  One member of staff has ...More Button

Was asked: the number of parliamentary questions his Department has processed in the past three years to date; the number of questions answered directly; the number of questions referred to bodies or agencies...More Button

Defence Forces Training

Was asked: if there are enough instructors to train drivers of military vehicles in the Defence Forces; and if there are sufficient driving courses for all brigades.More Button