Sport in Ireland will be the beneficiary of major funding under the “Project Ireland 2040” initiative.
Minister for Sport Shane Ross (pictured above) pledged funding across the country to boost facilities and help elite athletes flourish.
Former Olympic boxing gold medalist Michael Carruth welcomed the news of the government funding.
“The funding is great news,” said Carruth.
“Boxing is the biggest sport for Ireland at the Olympics, so this type of funding could really help with future Olympic contenders and those winning gold.
“I am seeing 16 and 17-year-olds right now, who are unbelievable, better than those that came before but we have 379 boxing clubs nationally and as a working class sport, sometimes there isn’t enough funding to go round.
“Major State investment could give the kids in the sport, the future Katie Taylor’s, the best possible chance to succeed and put Ireland on the map.”
Ross said that the funding would provide a boost not only to elite athletes but also people at local level.
He added: “It’s not often that a minister of such a vitally important department, gets to deliver, not just a coherent, well-costed, joined up plan, that takes the needs of the entire country into consideration, but also has the cash to deliver on it.
“We will be focusing on investing in top class sporting facilities at local level for all of our people while at the same time expanding the range of world class facilities available to our elite athletes.”
The funds, which will inject finance into all counties and regions, will be delivered via the Sports Capital Programme.
Project Ireland 2040 aims to set out how Ireland will develop as the population grows by one million people over the next two decades. It will involve the building of new homes and hospitals as well as urban regeneration and a series of road upgrades.