David McWilliams: “Dublin is a large ATM for the rest of the country” 5 years ago

David McWilliams: “Dublin is a large ATM for the rest of the country”

The economist’s comments might not go down well in rural Ireland.

Economist David McWilliams says that cities in Ireland have suffered from underinvestment due to the power of the rural lobby and what he describes as ‘The Sunday Game’ approach to planning in Ireland.


In the final episode of David McWilliams’ Ireland, which airs on TV3 on Thursday night, McWilliams calls for more investment in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford and asks if it’s time to accept that the economic future of Ireland is urban.

Rather than commanding more than its fair share of resources, McWilliams argues that Dublin is acting as an ATM for rural areas in Ireland, claiming that €10 billion leaves Dublin to go to counties outside the capital every year.

“10 billion euros leaves Dublin to the countryside every single year. So far from Dublin being something that sucks in the resources, Dublin is actually a large ATM for the rest of the country,” McWilliams says.

McWilliams will also examine the phenomenon of ‘Applegreen Land’ – Ireland’s ‘suburbs on steroids’ and will discuss the urban/rural issue with the audience and fellow contributors, who will include economist Colm McCarthy and Mairead Lavery from Irish Country Living.


David McWilliams’ Ireland: The Republic of Suburbia airs on TV3 tomorrow night, Thursday, 23 November, at 10pm.