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Saturday 10 December 2016

Controversial M3 firm makes €335,000 a week

Gordon Deegan

Published 07/11/2016 | 02:30

The controversial motorway, which was the subject of a series of protests because it runs near the ancient Hill of Tara, bypasses Dunshaughlin, Navan and Kells. Stock photo
The controversial motorway, which was the subject of a series of protests because it runs near the ancient Hill of Tara, bypasses Dunshaughlin, Navan and Kells. Stock photo

The operators of one of the most controversial road schemes in the country generated more than €335,000 per week in operating profits last year.

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The operators of one of the most controversial road schemes in the country generated more than €335,000 per week in operating profits last year.

New figures showed that the M3 Motorway recorded €17.39m in operating profits for Eurolink Motorway Operation (M3) Ltd and a €2m State-sponsored subsidy contributed to the profits.

In total, the firm recorded €23.2m, or €63,605 per day, in revenues in 2015. Revenues at the firm last year increased by 9pc to €23.2m.

The firm's revenues are made up of road tolls and operational payments from Transport Infrastructure Ireland, formerly National Roads Authority (NRA). The road tolls are generated by a €1.40 charge to motorists at each of the two toll plazas.

The payments from the NRA include traffic guarantee payments paid if sufficient volumes of motorists don't use the tolled route. The guarantee was put in place due to it being a challenging project to deliver.

The 51km M3 that runs from Clonee to north of Kells was built at a cost of almost €1bn.

The controversial motorway, which was the subject of a series of protests because it runs near the ancient Hill of Tara, bypasses Dunshaughlin, Navan and Kells.

Irish firm Siac Construction was one of the founding members of the consortium to build the road and the directors' report stated Siac sold its entire shareholding in the motorway firm in February.

The figures showed that the firm's pre-tax profits increased by 60pc, going from €4.56m to €7.29m.

Irish Independent

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