[Sinn Fein]

4th July 2003

Unemployment figures shows Government clearly failed to use boom years to plan for leaner times

Responding to the release of the latest unemployment figures Sinn Fein Dáil leader Caoimhghin Ó Caoláin said: ``Today's unemployment statistics, showing a rise of almost 12,000, coupled with the Exchequer figures from earlier in the week makes for depressing reading and represents a failure on behalf of the Government to properly manage the economy.

``With jobs losses being felt across the state from Donegal to Meath and from Dublin to Kerry it is clear that the Celtic Tiger has long departed these shores. It is also abundantly clear that this Government has obviously failed to use the boom years to strategically plan for leaner times.

``While the Government was happy to engage in spending splurges to further benefit the wealthy in Irish society over the last number of years it is now the ordinary Irish worker who is going to pay the price as the unemployment queues continue to rise.''

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