Fine Gael enterprise and jobs spokesman Richard Bruton TD, has said job creation will be the party’s “No 1 priority” should it come into power.
Bruton said that the party intend to use the first Dáil motion of the new term to highlight the need to “reinvigorate our economy”.
“The jobs crisis is acutely affecting our young generation. Over 80pc of the jobs lost have hit those under the age of 30. Ireland is facing a massive brain drain, with 100,000 already departed from our shores and another 65,000 set to join them this year. Many of these are highly educated graduates that we need to rebuild the shattered economy,” he said.
He went on to say that if the Government had implemented Fine Gael’s plans set out before the last budget there would be less people out of work: “If the Government had implemented Fine Gael plans there would be 50,000 people back in work or training today”.
An early general election is likely to be prompted when the Dáil resumes, as opposition parties are expected to enforce stricter pairing arrangements and pressuring the Government to hold outstanding by-elections.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Tánaiste Mary Coughlan dismissed the notion: “We still have a majority in the house … this Dáil will continue to its full term”.