Fianna Fáil Deputy Leader Éamon Ó Cuív has responded to the announcement of the establishment of New Era.


Deputy Ó Cuív commented, “The Government has today announced the establishment of New Era – a policy that Michael Noonan himself described as “some kind public relations add-on” little more than a year ago:


Simon Coveney was the author of that particular policy document and if you look at it, the figure of 100,000 jobs doesn’t appear anywhere in it; that seems to be some kind of public relations add-on that enthusiastic people attached to it. – Michael Noonan, Breakfast on Newstalk , July 14th 2010.


“Regrettably, the now Finance Minister has been proven right. There is absolutely no substance in today’s announcement and no evidence whatsoever of how tens of thousands of jobs will be created as a result. The initial target of this policy was to create105,000 jobs. During the General Election campaign, Fine Gael promised that New Era along with other measures would create 80,000 jobs. Listening today to Fergus O’Dowd failing to explain the point of this new quango, it is hard to avoid concluding that the only job this policy was focussed on was the new Minister’s.


“Unfortunately today’s announcement is further proof that, much like the Government’s “jobs budget”, New Era’s primary purpose is to generate headlines and the illusion of activity. It would be better for Fine Gael and Labour to be upfront about their false promises during the election campaign.”