Postcode proposals to be assessed
Plans for the country's postcodes will be announced in September, it has been revealed.
Pat Rabbitte, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, said that final bids on a system to identify every letterbox in the country will be assessed next month.
"The final tender for a national postcode system was issued last week; the responses will be evaluated by the department during August and I will bring a comprehensive proposal to Government for approval in September," he said.
The minister briefed Cabinet colleagues on progress for the national postcode plan on Tuesday night and it is understood only a small number of bids for the system are being examined.
Ireland is the only European Union country not to use postcodes, with Dublin the only city in the country split into districts, with some addresses developing into status symbols over the decades.
The new codes are likely to carry numbers and letters of up to seven or eight characters to pinpoint every home and business in the country.
The system will be used in addition to existing addresses in a bid to protect local heritage of unique townland names and knowledge used in some rural areas.
"The idea that the name of a townland which you could use in your address today would disappear overnight is not likely," a Government spokesman said.
No decision has been taken on whether the Dublin districts, including the prestigious areas of Dublin 4 and 6, will retain their identifiers.
It is expected that every address will have a new code within 18 months of the system being selected by Government in September. Plans for a postcode system were first mooted in 2005 and were due to be introduced five years ago.