[Sinn Fein]

15 February 2002

McLaughlin welcomes North-West gas announcement

Foyle MLA, Mitchel Mc Laughlin has welcomed the issuing of a Licence to an Bord Gais Eireann to construct a pipeline that will bring gas to Derry.

The Sinn Fein MLA said:

``The provision of gas will give a tremendous boost to the North West economy. It will assist in attracting future inward investment by reducing operating costs and giving end users a choice of energy.

It will not only provide hundreds of jobs during the construction phase but also full time employment for those required to operate a new gas fired power station at Coolkeeragh.

I have long called for increased investment in the North West infrastructure and have lobbied Dublin, London and Belfast Ministers for the extension of gas provision to the North West Region as a spur to attract other investment. This announcement is therefore most welcome.

This project also demonstrates the benefits of all-Ireland planning and co-operation and signifies a further step towards creating an island wide gas grid.''

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