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Construction industry must regain 'mojo', says minister

THE building industry needs to get its "mojo" back and help drive an Irish recovery, according to the minister of state for finance.

Brian Hayes told the Chartered Accountants Ireland annual conference that the government "sees the property market as an important segment of the economy".

"We do want to see a well-functioning commercial and residential property market based on realistic values and sustainable practices," he said.

"And despite the excesses and hubris of some developers we don't see them as social pariahs suffering from some horrible disease. Indeed, a little mojo from some developers might be welcome."

The government sees the property and wider construction sector as a labour-intensive industry.

"True and full information is essential to any properly functioning market and the government is committed to making such information available," Mr Hayes added.

He also criticised the EU, claiming it carried a large degree of blame for the financial crisis.

"The European Union doesn't belong to Germany or France or to any of the other big countries.

"The future of Europe belongs to all Europeans. We reject any kind of scapegoating of Ireland or any other European country.

"The financial and banking problems which Ireland and other European countries are now experiencing are partly a consequence of financial deregulation, which was actively encouraged by the EU."

Irish Independent