Young drivers will be offered discounts


Young drivers who complete an agreed number of driving lessons during a calendar year will be offered insurance discounts in an agreement reached with the insurance federation, the Dail was told. Mr Tom Kitt, Minister of State for Enterprise, outlined the measures taken by the Government to deal with high insurance costs for young drivers. He was responding to Mr David Stanton (FG, Cork East) who asked what the Government was doing to reduce premiums for young drivers. Mr Stanton said that before the election Fianna Fail had come up with some "sexy, vote-catching proposals", such as advanced driving courses. He added that 700,000 people were driving around the State using provisional licences.

Mr Kitt said the Government was also considering the possibility of a graduated licensing system for learner drivers. He said consultations would continue with the insurance industry but the basic problem was that the claims by young Irish drivers were very high, and particularly young male drivers. "Such drivers represent a very high risk to insurers and hence the relatively high motor premium levies charged to them."