Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 16 December 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement

Engagement with Londonderry Chamber of Commerce and Foyle Port

Photo of Niall BlaneyNiall Blaney (Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

I welcome Mr. McGrath to our committee today, albeit online. I would rather see him in person, but this is the way things are presently. Foyle Port has quite an impressive portfolio. There is certainly much activity going there and it does an awful lot of good work for the north west.

I also live on a lough, although it is the next one over, Lough Swilly, so I recognise how much potential the port in Derry could have as we develop as a region now with city status. I believe, however, the port is underutilised.

I am particularly interested regarding what was said about cruise liners, and Mr. McGrath mentioned Greencastle. What is the position there? I have not heard of this before. Are there plans afoot, and if there are, who is involved? Is the council involved? There is a harbour group there as well. Will Mr. McGrath give an update on that?

The way the port operates is quite impressive, as is the fact its profits are reinvested. Mr. McGrath is to be commended on that. If there are ways we can try to help develop the port through the Taoiseach's office and the shared island fund, I would very be happy to work with Mr. McGrath on doing that. As we saw in the previous presentation from Derry-Londonderry Chamber of Commerce on the development of the north west, it is an area that works very well on a cross-Border and intercounty basis. We are all big enough to say there is not one part that should develop ahead of the rest. By helping each other, we are helping ourselves. What are Mr. McGrath's views on that? I thank him for his presentation.