South Antrim MP and member of the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, Danny Kinahan has welcomed his committee colleagues’ support for his call for an in-depth review of Northern Ireland’s energy policy. The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee are to carry out an inquiry looking at how Northern Ireland will meet its renewable target of 40% by 2020, how it will meet an anticipated shortfall in supply, what steps can be undertaken to improve connectivity with the Republic and Great Britain and crucially for Mr Kinahan; what can be done to reduce our high energy prices.
Mr Kinahan said:
“I have made it an aim of my time in Parliament to work to remove as many barriers to economic growth in Northern Ireland as is possible. In speaking with businesses across South Antrim I have been struck by how frequently high energy costs are cited as the main threat to their survival, particularly small and medium-sized companies.
“I wholeheartedly welcome this inquiry as it signals a concerted effort here in Westminster to address an issue that many perceive has been left in limbo in Stormont. Northern Ireland’s energy sector is unique in that it is legislated from Westminster but is part of an all-island market. We need the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee to hear evidence from our energy providers, our energy infrastructure companies and our key stakeholders, to push for change in the way Westminster approaches our energy provision and how Westminster legislates for our all-island energy market.
“Put simply this is a step in the right direction for Northern Ireland. As we push for greater economic growth and as we move towards the devolution of corporation tax we need to make sure that the right discussions have taken place; that the decisions have been made based on evidence; and that any impediment to growth is given serious consideration. I urge all stakeholders to get involved in this inquiry as the Committee calls for submissions of evidence. This can be done in writing to the NI Affairs Committee through their website before 1st of June.”