The fundamental belief of my campaign has consistently been that West needs an experienced MEP to achieve impactful results in Europe. Seán Ó’Neachtain was Galway’s last MEP in 2009 but the time has now come for the West to once again have its voice represented at a European level. We need to make sure that we are positioned as the main hub for the western region and there are a number of ways we can strengthen this through the European Union. If we get this right, the benefits for the West of Ireland cannot be underestimated.
Over the course of my short snappy five-week campaign, I’ve focused on three core issues which I believe are key to the future of the constituency.
It is vital that both people and goods can be physically transported with ease across the county and city. We need to ensure that we have the basic infrastructure in place to build an integrated network across our rail, roads, and ports. The InvestEU Fund, which is backed by the European Investment Bank (EIB) Group, will have a budget of €650 billion to be spent between 2021 and 2027. We need to ensure we have a seat at the table to leverage such funding and invest it back into the West of Ireland, bringing modern connectivity across villages, towns, cities.
RESEARCH & INNOVATION
It goes without saying that education plays a pivotal role in securing well-paid jobs in the region. There are already numerous medical technology companies, multinationals and research centres across Galway but there is so much more we could do for Small and Medium Enterprises across the Midlands North West. Horizon Europe and the EU’s soon-to-be-launched €100 billion research and innovation programme could change the landscape of the West over the coming years. There’s so much untapped potential that SMEs in small and large towns we could draw upon which could provide a much-needed boost to businesses that are seeking to expand, which in turn creates jobs, bolstering the local economy in the process.
From Blueways to Greenways to cycleways, I’ve always been passionate about what the West has to offer when it comes to tourism. The lifeblood for many people across the constituency, it’s essential we now diversify the range of tourism products and services available and do so in a sustainable way. From the bridge in Portumna to Arranmore Island off Donegal, my goal from the outset of this campaign has been to target EU investment to
The EU is at a pivotal junction in its history and Ireland plays an important role in the direction it now takes. The EU impacts all our lives across areas such as education, agriculture, jobs, enterprise, and the environment.
We are more than capable and ready to welcome this industry to the West. And I believe I am the perfect accomplished candidate, ideally positioned geographically, to capture the imagination of the electorate in my area.