The Minister for Finance has been left exposed after Eurostat’s official ruling raised concerns far beyond the financial status of Irish Water, according to Fianna Fáil’s Environment Spokesperson Barry Cowen.

Deputy Cowen commented, “Eurostat’s ruling is even worse than previously predicted.  The agency has raised serious concerns about the entire set up of Irish Water, the level of Government control, the management and governance structures and the whole process of transferring water assets from local authorities.

“This exposes Minister Noonan’s attempts to dismiss the crisis at Irish Water as merely an issue with its financial make-up that will soon sort itself out.  He grossly misrepresented the reality.  It is clear that the European Commission has grave concerns about how Irish Water has been established and the level of control that the Government retains over what is supposed to be a public utility.

“It is time for Minister Noonan to cut out the spin and start being honest with taxpayers.  The Eurostat ruling published this evening is a damning indictment of the Government’s water policy.  It has shown systematic failures with Irish Water that are currently being ignored.  The more the Government seeks to play down this crisis, the more it will cost the taxpayer.”