Fianna Fáil Spokesperson for Dublin, John Lahart TD has said that Dublin is ill-prepared to respond to or capitalise on the few significant investment opportunities posed by Britain’s exit from the European Union.

His comments were made following reports that large insurance firms AIG and Lloyds of London recently chose to relocate their EU bases, post-Brexit to other European cities.

“In all too many respects, Dublin City is not ready to weather the economic storm that could potentially arise in the months ahead,” he explained.

“28% of Ireland’s population are based in Dublin while 45% of the GDP is generated here. Preparing the Greater Dublin Area for Brexit should be the overriding priority in deciding how to respond to the challenges and opportunities presented. Yet Ireland’s Brexit strategy remains largely unclear while prime operations look elsewhere in the EU post-Brexit.

“A lack of investment in housing, transport infrastructure and public services has led to unsustainable high rents, heavy traffic congestion, pressure on public transport services and a lack of available office space in the desired locations for relocation from the UK. Many of these deficits predate the referendum vote but are now brought into a sharper focus because of the result.

“We need a move away from short-term project based planning to longer term multi-agency planning so we can send a clear message to big player operations looking at our Capital as a successful European base. Dublin could be a wonderful city to live or work in and an even better city to invest in but time is running out.

“With just 22 months left in the Article 50 negotiations, it is now blatantly apparent that Dublin is ill-prepared to capitalise on the few potential gains that are to be had from the fallout from Brexit.

“It remains the view of Fianna Fáil that the Government must adopt a more ambitious approach in order to attract relocations from both the financial and insurance sectors,” concluded Deputy Lahart.