The Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin has said the sale of Ireland’s
only oil refinery, Whitegate in East Cork, has potentially serious
consequences for the Irish economy.
Deputy Martin has called for a statement from the Minister for
Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Pat Rabbitte following
news that the privately-owned refinery has been put up for sale.
“Whitegate is a key strategic asset. It provides one third of all our
transportation fuel and is a long-term principle supplier to the
National Oil Reserves Agency. The threat to its future has serious
implications for Ireland’s energy supply and consequently for our
economy,” explained Deputy Martin.
“The government must take this matter very seriously. I am calling on
Minister Pat Rabbitte to immediately state if his Department has had
any contact with Whitegate’s owners, Phillips 66, regarding the sale.
We need total transparency in any negotiations between the government
and the company on the future of the refinery.
“In addition to the strategic importance of Whitegate, it’s important
to remember its key role as a local employer. Whitegate has operated
in east Cork for nearly 55 years. It has been a major employer in the
area for decades, supporting hundreds of jobs directly and indirectly.
Its loss would be a serious blow to local economy.”