8 July 2011 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Speaking following response to the publication of the Quarterly National Accounts by the CSO Sinn Féin Councillor Matt Carthy said that “government austerity is strangling growth in local economies in County Monaghan.”
The CSO figures show a 4.3% decline in Gross National Product in the first three months of this year.
Cllr. Carthy said: “Despite the 1.3% growth in GDP indicated in last week’s CSO figures, the real story is the 4.3% drop in GNP. GNP is the most accurate measure of activity in the domestic economy as it excludes all price transferring by multi national companies.
“A 4.3% drop is exceptionally bad news, especially for Counties like Monaghan that have received less than our fair share of inward investment. We are reliant on small local businesses and these are the people that have been crucified by, first Fianna Fáil, and now Fine Gael policies. The Government’s strategy for economic recovery and the EU/IMF programme are based on projected GNP growth figures of 0.3% for this year and 2% for 2012. On the basis of the figures released last week we are a very long way off meeting those ambitious targets.
“The reason for this is very simple. Austerity is strangling growth in the domestic economy. Domestic demand has dropped by 3.1%, personal consumption has dropped by 2.9% while Government expenditure has dropped by 1.9%.
“Regressive taxes such as the Universal Social Charge, cuts to public spending and failure to invest in job creation are squeezing the domestic economy. This is the reason why every town in County Monaghan has seen businesses close almost every month.
“But rather than acknowledge this basic fact of economics our local Fine Gael TD’s are set to increase the pressure on domestic demand. Proposals for a household charge, water tax and site valuation charge, combined with threatened cuts to social welfare and public spending as well as changes to tax bands and credits will further contract the economy, resulting in more job losses and financial hardship for thousands of already hard pressed families in our county.
“The government needs to wake up to the fact that pursuing the failed economic policies of Fianna Fáil will do nothing to assist economic recovery. We need a major economic and family stimulus, to create jobs, boost economic demand and bring life back to our local economy.”

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