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Varadkar, Leo

Tuesday, 6 October 2020

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Health and Safety Authority

Was asked: the number of workplace inspectors in the employ of the HSA; the estimated full-year cost of their employment; and the percentage of businesses inspected by them in 2019 and to date in 2020.More Button

Was asked: the number of workplace inspectors in the employ of the HSA; the estimated full year cost of their employment; and the number of businesses inspected by them in 2019 and to date in 2020.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 151 and 155 together.More Button

The staff of the Health and Safety Authority is comprised of both administration and inspector grades. The inspector grades comprise of Grade I (senior inspectors) as well as GII and GIII inspector...More Button

At the end of 2019, the Health and Safety Authority employed 181 staff, including inspectors, professional and technical specialists, administrators and clerical staff. Of the 181 staff, 105 were...More Button

At the end of August 2020, the Health and Safety Authority employed 181 staff, including inspectors, professional and technical specialists, administrators and clerical staff. Of the 181 staff, 1...More Button

In 2019, the Health and Safety Authority completed 10,302 inspections and investigations under its occupational health and safety, and chemical mandates. More Button

From the beginning of 2020 to the end of August 2020, the Health and Safety Authority has completed 6,780 inspections and investigations under its occupational health and safety, and chemical man...More Button

Workplace Relations Commission

Was asked: the number of workplace inspectors in the employ of the Workplace Relations Commission; the estimated full-year cost of their employment; and the percentage of businesses inspected by them in 2019 ...More Button

Was asked: the number of workplace inspectors employed by the Workplace Relations Commission; the estimated full-year cost of their employment; and the number of businesses inspected by them in 2019 and to da...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 152 and 156 together.

  The Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) is an independent, statutory body under the aegis of my Department, established ...More Button

Trade Agreements

Was asked: the status of the publication of a report commissioned on the economic and sustainability impact assessment for Ireland of the EU-Mercosur Trade Agreement.More Button

In January 2020, my Department, in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, commissioned independent consultancy firm, Implement Consulting, to undertake an Economic and...More Button

The ESIA will consist of two equally important and complementary components, namely a comprehensive analysis of the potential economic benefits as well as a robust sustainability impact assessmen...More Button

In line with commitments in the Programme for Government, the ESIA is designed to assist Government in formulating its position on future ratification of the Agreement and it is my intention, wor...More Button

Work by the Consultants on the ESIA is well advanced with my Department informed that the bulk of the research has been completed. It is my intention that the Report will be published once it has...More Button

Work Permits

Was asked: if a person working in Ireland under the work permit programme can transfer to another employer in the same specific sector; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Ireland operates a managed employment permits system maximising the benefits of economic migration and minimising the risk of disrupting Ireland’s labour market. The system is designed to facilitat...More Button

The system is, by design, vacancy led and managed through the operation of the critical skills and ineligible occupations lists which determine employments that are either in high demand or are i...More Button

Under the Employment Permits Acts a permit holder on their first employment permit in the State is expected to stay with the initial employer for a period of 12 months. An application for a new e...More Button

After 12 months the permit holder may move employer subject to a new application for an employment permit and subject to the relevant criteria.More Button

  Question No. 155 answered with Question No. 151.More Button

  Question No. 156 answered with Question No. 152.More Button

Sick Pay Scheme

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to reports that an organisation (details supplied) is refusing to engage unions on issues relating to sick pay for workers in meat plants; and if he will make a stat...More Button

Industrial relations are based on voluntarism. The Minister has no power to compel parties to engage with one another. Should parties wish to explore collective bargaining in an impartial environme...More Button

I have publicly stated my intention to establish a Statutory Sick Pay Scheme in full consultation with employers and unions. This will build on the various improvements that have been made to soc...More Button

Job Losses

Was asked: if he will intervene in situations in which employees of meat processing plants are laid off due to the fact they live in direct provision.More Button

Ireland’s employment rights frameworks are horizontal, meaning that any statutory employment right must protect all workers and cannot discriminate on a sectoral or other basis, such as where a per...More Button

Enterprise Ireland

Was asked: if he will authorise Enterprise Ireland to release some funds granted under the disruptive technologies programme to companies such as a company (details supplied) without the venture private capit...More Button

The Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund (DTIF) is a €500 million fund, running from 2018 to 2027, established as part of the National Development Plan under Project Ireland 2040. It is administ...More Button

The Fund is available for collaborative projects seeking investment in the development and deployment of disruptive innovative technologies and applications, on a commercial basis, targeted at ta...More Button

One of the eligibility criteria for DTIF is the requirement for all enterprise partners to provide matching funding, equal to the amount they are seeking from the Fund. This is in keeping with th...More Button

Enterprise Ireland is engaging with all the project partners as part of the DTIF portfolio management process and provides special attention to SME participants. A number of small companies, awar...More Button

The Fund is an important mechanism for facilitating SMEs to grow, to scale-up and to attract investment. Indeed, there have already been several notable successes where SMEs involved in DTIF proj...More Button

EU Directives

Was asked: the cost to his Department to date of all fines paid by Ireland for non-transposition of EU directives into Irish law; the breakdown, by directive of the lump sum cost and the daily cost of each fi...More Button

My Department has not incurred any costs in relation to fines for non-transposition of EU directives into Irish law.More Button

Industrial Development

Was asked: his views on a matter (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The property that the Deputy is referring to is not owned by IDA Ireland. However, the Agency has included this building in its database of available property solutions for prospective clients look...More Button

More generally, County Kerry has witnessed a number of significant announcements from IDA client companies in recent years including investments from JRI America, Central Pharma and Sigmar. There...More Button

Action Plan for Jobs

Was asked: if his Department will be producing an action plan for jobs in 2020 or 2021; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Building on the extensive enterprise and employment supports that had already been deployed, the €7.4 billion July Stimulus Package was, as promised, a package of measures of sufficient scale that ...More Button

Having come through the initial economic shock with unprecedented levels of State intervention stabilising the economy, the focus is now on sustaining the recovery in the face of uncertainty and ...More Button

The National Economic Plan will set out a vision for what our post-COVID economy will look like. The plan will set longer term objectives for the economy post crisis and identify policies and str...More Button

The plan will be progressed over the coming weeks and I would expect it to launch in November. More Button

In 2019, the Action Plan for Jobs series was replaced by Future Jobs Ireland, a whole-of-government framework to prepare Ireland for the challenges and opportunities ahead in terms of the transit...More Button

The Programme for Government commits to updating the Future Jobs Ireland framework and will be taken forward as part of the implementation of the National Economic Plan.More Button

Credit Guarantee Scheme

Was asked: the basic eligibility criteria for businesses to avail of the credit guarantee scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Announced as part of the Government’s suite of supports for businesses that have been negatively impacted as a result of the outbreak of COVID-19 in Ireland, the COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme wi...More Button

Small and Medium Enterprises

Was asked: the measures being considered to support SMEs facing difficulties with commercial rents and arrears due to significantly reduced turnovers; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Government introduced the July Stimulus €7bn package of supports for firms of all sizes, which includes the wage subsidy scheme, the pandemic unemployment payment for the self-employed, grants,...More Button

Company Liquidations

Was asked: the steps he will take in respect of the liquidation of a company (details supplied) to ensure there is a fair settlement for the workers; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Debenhams is a court-supervised liquidation, subject to oversight of the High Court and accordingly is sub judice. Under the Companies Act 2014, I have no power to intervene in a court-supe...More Button

Covid-19 Pandemic Supports

Was asked: if a county-specific list is to be published of all establishments that will participate in the spend and save scheme; if this list is to be made available and easily accessible for persons who wis...More Button

The July Jobs Stimulus Plan announced by the Government contains a suite of tax, loan and expenditure measures designed to directly support business at all levels of the economy that are negatively...More Button

Departmental Contracts

Was asked: if he has engaged a third-party company in each of the years 2017 to 2019, inclusive, and to date in 2020 to conduct online and or social media monitoring and-or provide reports on social media cov...More Button

My Department has not engaged a third-party company to conduct online and-or social media monitoring and-or provide reports on social media coverage of my Department in each of the years from 2017 ...More Button

Departmental Staff

Was asked: the number of staff in his Department on sick leave between March and September by month in 2019 and to date 2020; the pay arrangements that exist for staff on sick leave for an extended period of ...More Button

The number of staff on sick leave in my Department between March and September by month in 2019 and 2020 and the number of sick days accounted for by my Department by month over the period are set ...More Button