Updated: 15/12/16 : 06:36:32
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Government and Fianna Fáil fail to reach agreement on rental strategy

Talks between the Government and Fianna Fáil on measures to deal with rising rents broke up late last night without agreement.

Minister for Housing Simon Coveney said that the Fianna Fáil party position has made it impossible for the Government to bring forward legislation on the issue.

RTÉ reports that Fianna Fáil has accused the Government of intransigence.

The issue is the most significant disagreement between the Government and Fianna Fáil.

After the talks both sides agreed that the working group to look at tax incentives for landlords should begin its work in the New Year, however differences remained on other key issues

Throughout the negotiations Minister Coveney said the proposed 4% limit on rent increases in the rent pressure zones of Dublin and Cork city was not negotiable.

The limits are being introduced in these cities because they meet two designated criteria: that annual rents have risen by at least 7% in four of the last six quarters; and that the average rent is above the national average in the past quarter.

However, it is understood the main issue in the dispute was the criteria for other areas to qualify for a rent limit to be imposed.

Fianna Fáil wants Galway, Limerick, Waterford and large population centres surrounding Dublin and Cork city also included from the outset.

The party also believes the proposal to speed up the process to assess these areas from mid-January does not go far enough.

It wants new criteria put in place but the minister believes that the proposal was fundamentally flawed

Last night he said it seemed political considerations were more important to Fianna Fáil.