No changes for Noonan and Howlin in reshuffle

Friday 11 July 2014 18.18
Ministers Howlin and Noonan remain on in posts of Public Expenditure and Finance
Ministers Howlin and Noonan remain on in posts of Public Expenditure and Finance

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has retained his finance and public spending ministers, limiting any disruption to the Government's deficit-cutting plans from a Cabinet reshuffle.

As expected, the reshuffle did not affect Finance Minister Michael Noonan and Public Expenditure and Reform Minister Brendan Howlin.

The two ministers were seen as helping to win back investor confidence after the financial crisis and they helped to guide the country out of its international bailout last year.

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton, also keeps his portfolio.

As part of the moves announced, Alex White was appointed as the new Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources replacing Pat Rabbitte.

Paschal Donohoe has been named Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, replacing Leo Varadkar, who moves to the Department of Health.

Meanwhile, Labour’s Gerald Nash is to be made a ‘Super Junior Minister’ with responsibility for business and employment, which will give him a seat but no vote at the Cabinet table.

Announcing the changes in the Dáil, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said that since the country exited the EU/IMF bailout, the economy has continued to recover strongly. 

But he added that economic recovery is also about creating the kind of environment where enterprise and jobs can thrive and where the kind of public services they deserve can be provided for people.  

He said he wants to give people confidence and security in their lives so that they can start to see day-to-day that the huge sacrifices they have made for the recovery now have all been worthwhile.

Mr Kenny said that the Government will shortly publish a Statement of Priorities for the remainder of its term. He said that as the country returns to better or more "normal" times this document will outline how the government intends to give a hand to working families along with low and middle-income workers. 

"We intend to make sure that recovery is felt and deeply in every city, town and village across this country," the Taoiseach said.