Thursday, 12 December 1996
Dáil Éireann Debate
59. Mr. Callely asked the Minister for Finance the clear commercial mandate and clarity in financial targets which each commercial State body has been given in each of the years 1995 to 1997; the criteria used to measure their performances; if he will give a breakdown in respect of each body; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24216/96]
Minister for Finance (Mr. Quinn): The setting of a commercial mandate for commercial State bodies is achieved through the corporate planning process. Corporate plans are drafted and adopted by the bodies concerned after consultation with the appropriate Minister and the Minister for Finance. These plans are reviewed and updated by the companies on an annual basis. Each body's corporate plan takes account of the particular issues and challenges it faces in its own sphere of activity. The range of challenges is wide and varied but would include transition from a State monopoly service provider to operating in an open competitive market, compliance with EU driven regulatory change, accelerating technological change and the need to recognise and meet increasing customer demands.
Given the diverse nature of their activities, targets and performance criteria will vary widely from company to company. The setting of these targets is a matter for the boards of the companies and the responsible Minister. Because of the commercially sensitive data they contain,  corporate plans are confidential to the companies concerned.
Major examples of commitment to State bodies adopting a more commercial mandate include the implementation of the cost and competitive review in the ESB, Telecom Éireann's strategic alliance, the Government's decision to inject equity into Bord na Móna to reduce unsustainable debt, and legislation changing the legal status of State bodies such as Aer Rianta, Bord na Móna and the ESB.
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