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Connick Welcomes Budgetary Allocation for Forestry Programme

Sean Connick TD, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food with responsibility for forestry, today welcomed the budgetary allocation for the forestry programme in 2011, and commented that "the allocation by the Government of some €114.5 million to fund the forestry programme in 2011 is tangible evidence of this Government's continued commitment to forestry".

Minister of State Connick added, "I am particularly conscious of the role of forestry in our economy, at both local and national level, and also the long term benefits and opportunities arising from investment in this indigenous sector.  The potential return on investment in forestry, in the short and long term, was also highlighted by the various stakeholders within the sector in their various communications with me.  Despite the severe economic conditions that currently prevail, and the need for serious retrenchment in so many areas of public expenditure, it is particularly pleasing for me that the role of forestry and its potential to contribute to economic development has been so clearly recognised through the near maintenance of funding  for forestry, with an allocation of €114.5m, at 2010 levels.  The programme encompasses afforestation, the payment of ongoing premium commitments and support schemes which ensure proper management of the forest resource."

Minister Connick added "the provision for 2011 will enable payment to be made for about 7,000 hectares in 2011 and will also facilitate the continuation of various support schemes operated under the programme, primarily forest roads. The challenge will be to ensure that the most efficient and effective use is made of these funds to deliver the maximum return for Irish forestry"

Date Released: 09 December 2010