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CPSU adopt motion in calling for a change in Irish oil and gas terms

By: 
Mark Cawley
Motion,  re: Oil and Gas legislation, adopted by Civic Public and Services Union (CPSU) Annual Conference and was propsed by PSO branch in Sligo (speech form Mark Cawley who propsed the motion below).
This annual delegate conference calls on the government
to reverse the 1987 legislation change which reduced
the Irish States share of ownership in offshore oil and
gas from 50% to zero % and abolished royalties from
such reserves.

To reintroduce the 50% tax rate on profits from oil and
gas exploration as opposed to 25% and the abolishing of
tax write offs against production costs for oil
companies as existed prior to 1992.

Revenue derived from these changes should replace the
Pension Levy and pay cuts for all public servants
earning under 50,000 Euro per annum and reverse many
cuts to welfare recipients and in the health and
education sectors.

Below is text of speech by Mark Cawley, Sligo PSO delegate proposing motion
Delegates,

How many times have you heard one of our trade union officials
or any trade union official on national tv or radio trying to
defend our pay and conditions to be told by a presenter or a
economist that we have no alternative, the country is in
economic meltdown and savings have to be made somewhere for the
good of the nation

That is were this motion is coming from, we all know the
economic situation of the country,  we all know something has to
be done and we all agree that giving pay cut after cut to low
paid civil and public service workers is not the way forward and
cutting the payments of pensioner and those who find themselves
unemployed is also surely not the answer, but the supposed
leaders of this great land seem to have no other plan
and definitely not a plan that will make the rich and the
politically connected pay their share.

This motion is designed to show that there are other ways to
bring in revenue  and that these ways need not necessarily take
money out of the pockets of the most needy in society or the
likes of me or you comrades.

Prior to 1987 the irish states share of ownership of all oil and
gas reserves in irish territory was 50% on top of that the state
was entitled to royalties from any such reserves but in 1987 the
government of the day changed the legislation to give away the
states share of irish oil and gas and abolished royalties on
those reserves.

In 1992 the then minister mr aherne decided that it would be
wise for ireland to reduce its tax take on oil and gas
exploration profits down from 50% to 25% and introduced a tax
write off based on production costs meaning oil companies can
take irish oil and pay little to no tax at all to the exchequer

This motion, delegates, calls on the government to reverse these
decisions and go back to the pre 1987 position. folks currently
oil and gas  reserves all over the world are dwindling why
should this country be giving its reserves away on the cheap.

Anyone who argues that we will scare away the oil and gas
companies by returning to the 50% tax on profits is nothing
short of scaremongering because the oil companies are still
getting a great deal, the international average tax take is
currently 68%  and many countries are actually nationalising
their oil and gas reserves so the oil companies will still see
ireland as rich pickings.

Delegates in 2006 the government estimated that the oil and gas
reserves in the rockall and porcupine basins were valued at 420
billion euro and that estimate did not include over half the
irish territorial waters. imagine what could be done with the
royalties and increased tax take from these reserves.

I was never the greatest at maths but by god you would need some
amount of pension levies and pay cuts to come up with the
revenue that this one legislative change could bring in.

You might wonder,   why have i never read about this in the
sunday independent (if any of you still read that anti public
service rag) well the reason is their owner mr tony o reillys
owns 49% of a company called providence resources.
that company is currently in a consortium with exxon mobile
which has the licence to exploit i mean explore the porcupine
basin off the clare to kerry coastline for oil and gas,

So it very much in his interest to campaign against you and me
to look for civil and public servants to be forced onto the
bread line all the while having a sweetheart deal in place to
take the natural resources of our country and pay as little as
possible back

Folks please support this motion it shows that there are real
alternatives to the savage pay cuts and levies all we need is
the political will to take decisions that can really save the
country and not just victimise civil and public service worker
and the most needy in society

Again i urge you to support this motion, thanks for listening.