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PLANES COST /1M.

Byline: PAUL CLARKSON

FOREIGN military aircraft cost taxpayers more than EUR1million a year.

The government has stopped charging flyover and communications fees on around 7,000 military aircraft for using Irish airspace.

And the number is expected to rise to 10,000 this year.

Labour Transport spokeswoman Roisin Shortall called yesterday for an end to the tax exemption.

She said: "The public will be shocked to find our Transport Department actually pays for the loss from exempting military aircraft from charges."

And Green Party chairman added: "It is further proof that our neutral status has become a joke."

The Transport Department said Ireland was part of an EUtreaty called Eurocontrol.

It exempts military aircraft from charges for legal reasons.
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Dec 4, 2002
Words:119
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