Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has disputed claims that the State has not attempted to buy the land for the new National Maternity Hospital.

The facility is set to be built on land which will be owned by an independent charity, St Vincent's Holdings, and rented to the State as part of a 99-year lease.

The Religious Sisters of Charity order owns the land and has said it is gifting it to the Irish people.

The order also said that it has "never at any point" been contacted by the Government or the State to discuss the purchase of the site.

The St Vincent's Healthcare Group has also disputed that it has been approached to sell the land.

However, Mr Varadkar said he has been told there is correspondence between the Secretary General of the Department of Health and the chairman of the board of St Vincent's Healthcare Group saying St Vincent's was not willing to sell.

Mr Varadkar said that if either St Vincent's or the Religious Sisters of Charity are now willing to sell the land, the State would be willing to buy.

He said there are issues with the ownership of the land and the Government is not happy with the current proposal on the lease and there are also issues with governance.

Mr Varadkar said there would be renewed engagement with all the players and there are lots of conflicts and different interests at play.

Earlier, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that ideally the State would own the hospital and the land given how much money the taxpayer is investing in the facility.