NI public finances a matter of considerable concern – Aiken

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NI public finances a matter of considerable concern – Aiken

Dr Steve Aiken OBE MLA, UUP Finance Spokesperson

“The report from the Fiscal Commission today brings to the fore the stark reality of Northern Ireland’s Public Finances. That the budget can only be balanced by bringing forward a £297M claim on the Treasury Reserve - that has to be paid back this year - is a matter of considerable concern.


“However, looking again at how we actually spend our money, for instance how we make use of RRI and Financial Transaction Capital, coupled with delays in such projects as the City Deal, and major infrastructure programmes, shows that even with the monies we do have, we need a transformation on how we both budget, and effectively spend, the resource and capital that we have.


“Not having a functioning NI Executive helps no-one.  Any further delay in re-establishing the Assembly and having our own Ministers is only going to exacerbate our budget position. Abrogating that responsibility to the Secretary of State, as was the case for 3 years under the last hiatus, lets down all of the people of Northern Ireland.”