According to the 2016 census the population of the Republic of Ireland was 4,761,865, and estimates of the population resident in Northern Ireland at 30 June 2018 was 1,881,600. This is a total combined population (for the whole Island) of 6,643,465. That’s less than at the end of the Famine. (1851), and much less than London’s (11 Million). The growth of the population in the whole island of Ireland is urgently needed to provide an economy which is viable and sustainable in the longer term.
We should set a Population growth target of 5% per annum for a period of twenty years. We can achieve this growth by encouraging the Birth-Rate, immigration, and encouraging the Irish abroad, to return to their homeland. Some estimates of the size of the Irish diaspora abroad, put the figure at 80 million
The regeneration proposed involves the expansion of existing cities of, Cork, Galway, Limerick, and Waterford, and the creation of new cities in Athlone, Dundalk, and Sligo, which in addition to the expansion of other large towns to the status of mini-cities, would achieve the necessary growth to create a viable economy. Area Development Corporations must be established in each of these cities to plan and implement the proposed regeneration developments. Using the public / private partnership model where possible. Planning laws must be changed to allow the major infrastructural and slum clearance projects so vital to this regeneration to take place quickly and without years of court battles, which are often undertaken only to provide windfall profits to property owners.
The employment generated would provide much needed medium and long term employment opportunities. in an economy which would allow our skilled and graduate workforce to remain in the state, stimulating the indigenous business culture such an expansion could create. (see also The Economy – tax reform.)
We must seek to build consensus, to establish first what must be done, second what should be done, and finally what is simply desirable. Health, Education, and Justice, must be at the forefront of the regeneration of the Irish Nation. The pre-requisite for success is a healthy, educated, and motivated people, this will create a strong, and vibrant economy.
We made great contributions to the rest of the? world now lets do it at home…