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Lighthouse Service

Volume 202: debated on Tuesday 21 January 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much money has been paid in each of the last five financial years by Her Majesty's Government from the General Lighthouse Fund to the Irish Government to subsidise that country's lighthouse service; if he will state how long this system of payments has been in existence; and if he will make a statement.

No money is paid to the Irish Government from the General Lighthouse Fund. The lights and buoys in the Irish Republic form part of a common British Isles system of navigational aids managed by the three general lighthouse authorities (GLA) which are financed from the fund. The fund derives its income from light dues levied at ports in Britain and Ireland.The Commissioners of Irish Lights (CIL) are the GLA for the whole of Ireland. Under a 1985 agreement with the Irish Government, broadly half the costs deemed to be incurred by CIL in the Republic are—following a transitional period—now met by an annual contribution from the Irish Government and by light dues collected at ports in the Republic of Ireland. The balance of those costs are met by the fund.

Over the last five years, light dues collected in the Republic of Ireland and the Irish Government contribution were:

Light dues

IR £ million Irish Government contribution

1986–871.91.3
1987–882.21.4
1988–892.52.0
1989–902.62.3
1990–912.72.4