Public Inquiry on the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme

Part of Ministerial Statement – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 4:30 pm on 24th January 2017.

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Photo of Alex Maskey Alex Maskey Sinn Féin 4:30 pm, 24th January 2017

First, I thank the Minister for making an absolute pledge of non-interference by him as the Minister of Finance. I note that he has asked others to do likewise. I may have missed it — I apologise if I have — but I have not heard any other party, as yet, saying that, if one of its members becomes the Minister of Finance in a future Executive, they will adopt the same position of non-interference in any way whatsoever. I have not heard that and, if possible, I would like to hear that.

Yesterday, the Assembly considered a plan from the Economy Minister to save a figure of somewhere in the region of £30 million — it was certainly less than that — out of the total of £490 million. Will the inquiry be able to examine the efforts of the Department to contain the overall costs?