Emergency €36m funding for CIÉ

Tue, Jul 24, 2012, 01:00

The Cabinet has agreed to provide €36 million in emergency funding to State-owned transport group CIÉ to bolster its finances and avoid significant cuts in public transport services across the country.

This comes against a backdrop of a continuing fall in passenger numbers at Dublin Bus, Bus Éireann, as well as rising fuel costs and cuts in its State subsidy.

“This funding is being allocated because we are conscious of the need to maintain the public transport service and because we recognise that the financial position of CIÉ is very difficult,” Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar said today.

The additional funding will take CIÉ subvention for 2012 to €278 million, when it was supposed to shrink due to exchequer constraints.

CIÉ received a subvention from the State of €265 million in 2011, which was due to fall to €242 million this year. The extra funding for CIÉ will result in a reduction in spending in other areas by the department.

This will involve cutbacks or deferrals in capital spending in sport, tourism, other areas of public transport, smarter travel (including bicycle lanes) and maritime operations.

Mr Varadkar said it was a “hard decision, but a necessary one” to ensure that CIÉ “remains adequately funded for the immediate future”.