Dáil Éireann - Volume 452 - 04 May, 1995

Written Answers. - Science, Technology and Innovation Report.

17. Mr. L. Fitzgerald asked the Minister for Enterprise and Employment when he intends to establish the task force he has promised for the implementation of the report of the National Science, Technology and Innovation Council; the timescale he proposes to set for the implementation of this programme in view of its importance to the economy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7914/95]

Minister for Enterprise and Employment (Mr. B. Bruton): When I launched the Tierney Report on Science, Technology and Innovation on 27 March, I announced that the Government had decided to establish a Cabinet committee and task force to progress the recommendations in the report.

The Chairman of the task force is Mr. John Travers, chief executives of Forfás, the national policy advisory body on industrial development and science and technology. The core membership of the task force will be senior representatives of the Departments of Finance, Enterprise and Employment, Agriculture, Food and Forestry, and Education. Other Departments will be represented as appropriate. Mr. Dan Tierney and Professor Dervilla Donnelly, formerly chairman and member of the council respectively, are also on the task force. The role of the task force is to report to the Cabinet committee on how best to address the implementation of the recommendations. The work of the task force will be overseen by the Cabinet committee which I will chair and which will comprise the Ministers of the relevant Departments.

As regards the timescale, I share the [850] Deputy's view of the importance of this issue to the economy. The task force has already had its first meeting, on 2 May, and I have set a target deadline of end-October for the completion of its work.