Alliance Party Deputy Leader and Finance Spokesperson, Stephen Farry MLA, has stressed that while on the surface any new money for Northern Ireland would be welcome, any self-congratulations must be seen in the context of the damage of Brexit.
Responding to the announcement by the Chancellor of the Exechequer of the outcome of his spending review, Stephen Farry said: “While the additional £400 million that has been announced by the Chancellor for Northern Ireland is welcome, given the bluster and spin from this government, we will believe it when we see it.
“The public expenditure situation in Northern Ireland is very challenging, and these funds will only go so far in addressing the pressures.
“This reality reinforces the need for Northern Ireland to invest these resources strategically through ensuring that they are spent efficiently and effectively. This means pursuing much needed reforms across our public services and economy. Simply using this money to plug gaps without changing how we do things, just buys time while reform is further kicked down the road.
“Neither the Government nor the DUP, that props it up, should be engaging in any form of self-congratulation. The damage from the reckless Brexit process, and in particular the entertainment of a no deal exit, has already caused huge damage to the economy and public finances.”