Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Driving Licence Recognition.

Thursday, 23 November 1972

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 263 No. 13

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162.

Mr. Harte: Information on Patrick D. Harte  Zoom on Patrick D. Harte  asked the Minister for Local Government if he is prepared to enter into discussion with the British Government concerning the mutual recognition [2599] of driving licences for motor vehicles, with particular reference to meeting the problem affecting the movement of people from Northern Ireland to the Republic and vice versa.

Mr. Molloy: Information on Robert Molloy  Zoom on Robert Molloy  I would refer the Deputy to the reply given to Question No. 132 on the 8th June last which was to the effect that despite my willingness for such reciprocal arrangements the attitude of the British authorities in 1970 did not allow for reopening the subject.

The Deputy may be aware, however, that the Council of Ministers of the EEC is considering a proposed directive which, if adopted, would provide for a standard form of driving licence that would be valid in all member states. The implications of these proposals are being examined in my Department.

Mr. Harte: Information on Patrick D. Harte  Zoom on Patrick D. Harte  If the Minister had evidence that the attitude of the British authorities had changed would he move on foot of that?

Mr. Molloy: Information on Robert Molloy  Zoom on Robert Molloy  This is a matter which I know the Deputy has raised on a number of occasions. He should get some satisfaction from the statement that it seems our entry to the EEC will overcome the difficulty that has irked him and others over the years.

Mr. Harte: Information on Patrick D. Harte  Zoom on Patrick D. Harte  Yes, I congratulate the members of the EEC on their advanced thinking in view of the fact that Ministers here, who could claim to be more Republican than others, refuse to recognise the fact that they were Irish people.

Mr. Molloy: Information on Robert Molloy  Zoom on Robert Molloy  That is very unfair.

Mr. Harte: Information on Patrick D. Harte  Zoom on Patrick D. Harte  The Minister did not answer my question. I asked if he would be prepared to act on foot of information that the British authorities had changed their attitude, as known to him?

Mr. Molloy: Information on Robert Molloy  Zoom on Robert Molloy  If I had evidence that the British authorities had changed their attitude I would be very willing to have discussions on the matter reopened but I have no such evidence.

Mr. Harte: Information on Patrick D. Harte  Zoom on Patrick D. Harte  Thank you. That is the answer I wanted.


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