02 Jun 2017
IFA PRESIDENT CONGRATULATES LEO VARADKAR ON HIS ELECTION AS LEADER OF FINE GAEL
IFA President Joe Healy has congratulated Minister Leo Varadkar on his election today as leader of Fine Gael. He wished Mr Varadkar success in the role and said he looks forward to working closely with him in the future.
The IFA President said, “Minister Varadkar displayed a strong commitment to agriculture and rural Ireland during the campaign for leadership. This commitment must now be backed up by actions that recognise and reward the contribution farming makes to the overall economy, and to generating employment and economic activity right across the country.
“Minister Varadkar must place a firm policy focus on achieving the sustainable and profitable growth of family farming and rejuvenating rural Ireland through balanced regional development and the provision of rural services.
Joe Healy said, “Minister Varadkar’s track record demonstrates a willingness to support Irish farmers and address the issues affecting rural Ireland. As Minister for Social Protection, he reversed Farm Assist cuts, increased places on the Rural Social Scheme and extended PRSI benefits to farmers and the self-employed. As Minister for Transport, he supported the negotiation of a new National Roads Agreement between his Department, IFA and Transport Infrastructure Ireland which is worth over €9m in additional payments to landowners impacted.
“I look forward to leading IFA in continuing to work closely with Minister Varadkar to progress further measures to improve farm incomes and support the agri-food sector”
IFA will seek an early meeting with the new Fine Gael leader to discuss the priority actions needed for the agriculture sector.