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 energy supply in Ireland.
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 principal supplier to the National Oil Reserves Agency. The threat to its future has serious implications for Ireland’s energy supply,” 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.”