Thursday 23 February 2021
Rachel Woods MLA has described a £290m plan for NI's economic recovery after the pandemic as "vacuous".
The Department of Economy released a 29-page document outlining the Minister's plan around skills, research and development, green recovery and investment, trade and exports yesterday (24th February 2021).
However, Rachel Woods MLA said that the plan contains little by way of new thinking and could never deliver the Just Transition to a low carbon economy that we need. Rachel commented:
"This plan contains very little detail, no targets and no specifics on funding - frankly, its vacuous.
"I'm also concerned that the report demonstrates that the Economy Minister has learnt little or nothing from the pandemic.
"Covid-19 has exposed the inequalities and huge flaws inherent in our economic system. Yet, this recovery plan fails to show any new thinking and instead, falls back on the failed policies of growth at any cost, and an obsession with GDP that can mislead analysis of carbon-intensity and inequality.
"There is no mention of health and well-being in this plan. There is no mention of a Just Transition. There is a reference to low carbon jobs, but no detail on how public investment will help provide them or how green stimulus will address inequalities and the climate crisis.
"Going back to business as usual is not good enough when we are facing such massive challenges.
"A committed, detailed and well-resourced green recovery plan would revitalise individuals, businesses and communities; providing genuine solutions to inequality and unemployment, as well as kick-starting the Just Transition to a low carbon economy that we need to tackle climate breakdown and the biodiversity crisis.
"This plan is nowhere near enough to address the defining issues of our time."
Sinead McIvor - 07701 302 498