Friday 2 December 2016

Fortune finally smiles on rural Ireland

Published 03/04/2015 | 02:30

Fresh milk bottles are displayed on desk during a demonstration by Italian agricultural association Coldiretti in Rome. European Union farmers will for the first time since 1984 have no legal restrictions on the amount of milk they can produce as the EU abolishes milk production quotas (REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini)
Fresh milk bottles are displayed on desk during a demonstration by Italian agricultural association Coldiretti in Rome. European Union farmers will for the first time since 1984 have no legal restrictions on the amount of milk they can produce as the EU abolishes milk production quotas (REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini)

It has been a good week for rural Ireland. The announcement of up to 1,000 jobs in Longford yesterday came on the back of the ending of milk quotas in the dairy sector. There has been a feeling that rural Ireland has in many ways lost out on the bounce in our economic fortunes over the past 18 months.

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There is little doubt that the benefits of the recent upturn have been centred in Dublin and other cities. In contrast, the news from Longford and the dairy sector are very much stories based in rural Ireland. Any day that 750 construction jobs are announced for the midlands - with the possibility of up to 1,000 permanent positions at a later stage - has to be a good one.

Center Parcs is an established tourist resort operator in Britain, with a number of very successful sites mainly in the midlands and south of England. Its entry into the Irish market will certainly provide local holiday and weekend-break options for Irish families.

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