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Irish government confirms Budget 2012

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Ireland's Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport have been informed of their funding allocation, following Budget 2012.

The current expenditure provision for the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport for next year will be EUR786m (£672m) - down EUR69m (£59m) on estimates for 2011.

Capital expenditure will fall by EUR267m (£228m) to EUR1.231bn (£1.1bn) with minister Leo Varadkar admitting that some "worthwhile" projects had been cut back or postponed.

National tourism agency Fáilte Ireland faces a 5 per cent cut to EUR59.4m (£50.8m), while the Irish Sports Council receives the same reduction to EUR44.5m (£38.1m).

Both organisations will also incur further funding reductions on a year-by-year basis until 2015, although a special allocation has been earmarked for The Gathering event in 2013.

Varadkar said: "The aim is therefore to get maximum return for the taxpayer from the still considerable planned investment in transport, tourism and sport."

Meanwhile, the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has been allocated EUR224m (£191.5m) for current expenditure and EUR43m (£36.8m) in capital funding.

Arts Council Ireland nets EUR63.1m (£53.9m); the department's heritage programme will receive EUR48.4m (£41.3m); and for the National Parks and Wildlife Service is allocated EUR14.4m (£12.3m).

Minister Jimmy Deenihan said: "My department and the sectors it represents will make a significant contribution towards getting the country out of the present crisis."

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Image: Hans-Peter Bock

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Ireland's Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport have been informed of their funding allocation, following Budget 2012.

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