Digital Desk Staff
Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said EU sanctions on Russia will hit Ireland economically on energy, food and commodities.
It comes as the Tánaiste said the Government cannot mitigate in full the rising cost of living.
As the Irish Examiner reports, he was speaking at a private Fianna Fàil parliamentary party meeting where he said the war in Ukraine will slow growth at an EU level and with our trading partners.
"The economy has bounced back with 2.5 million plus in employment, but the war will put expenditure pressures on many areas," he said.
Mr Martin said Ireland is engaging at EU level for flexibility on the energy directive.
"We have allocated nearly €2 billion to alleviate the pressures on people We are focused on security of energy supply before we head into the winter," he said.
The EU Commission are likely to return with hard proposals on energy by the end of April, he said.
As a country, Mr Martin said we have a fundamental objective to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels.
"In the short term we must take steps to ensure supply and for the medium term we must double down on renewables. We are advancing wind energy proposals to accelerate this transition," he added.
Mr Martin told the meeting that the Irish people want the Government to continue with a strong humanitarian approach in our collective response to Ukraine.
"We are focusing on ensuring a whole of government response," he said.
He said the country must target our support on sectors and families who are most under pressure.
Meanwhile, Leo Varadkar has said the Government cannot mitigate in full the rising cost of living and all it can do is “ease the pain".
Responding to the latest hike in electricity prices by Electric Ireland, Mr Varadkar said the drivers of the increases are largely outside of the control of the government.
"Unfortunately it’s something that is largely outside of the control of Government and the price of gas and therefore the price of electricity - which is generated from gas - is determined by the cost of gas on the international market,” he told The Hard Shoulder on Newstalk.