‘Dark cloud of Brexit hanging over NW’

Muff village County Donegal. DER2616GS004
Muff village County Donegal. DER2616GS004

The Donegal and Derry border region is more exposed to Brexit than anywhere in Ireland and a recession in tourism will hit the North West harder than elsewhere, it’s been stressed.

Senator Robbie Gallagher, who is originally from Termon and a member of Fianna Fáil, said: “There is the dark cloud of Brexit hanging over all of us.

“No country will be more exposed to Brexit than Ireland will be. By the same token, no part of the country is more exposed to Brexit than the rural towns located in the border counties from Donegal to Louth.”

Independent Senator Pádraig Ó Céidigh pointed out the importance of the tourist economy to the Donegal area. He said any recession, whether precipitated by Brexit or otherwise, would hit the North West region harder than other parts of the country.

“Tourism is important in counties such as Donegal and Kerry, while it is not as relevant for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Dublin, so we should take those factors into consideration.

“If there is a recession in tourism, places like Donegal will be hit much harder than places like Dublin,” maintained Senator Ó Céidigh.

A Dublin-based senator, however, has controversially claimed that people in Donegal are getting off lightly in terms of local property tax in comparison to what is paid in the capital.

Labour Party Senator Kevin Humphreys made the comment in relation to the distribution of property tax top-ups to poorer counties.

“We must look at people who are earning huge amounts of money and can afford to pay the taxation to afford the equalisation. People who are living in terraced houses are paying huge property tax compared to what people in Donegal, Leitrim or Waterford pay. There has to be a little fairness in it,” he said.