20th March 2017
The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, T.D., will travel to the Netherlands today to meet with two of her senior EU counterparts. The meetings come as part of a programme of outreach to key EU Members by the Government. The Minister will meet with Minister Henk Kamp, Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister Lilianne Ploumen, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation in the Hague.
Minister Mitchell O’Connor will set out the significance of the impact on Ireland of the UK’s departure from the EU, and will convey the unique nature of Ireland’s position as the Member State most directly affected by the UK’s exit. The Dutch Ministers that Minister Mitchell O’Connor is meeting have responsibility for Trade and for the Single Market, two areas that will be crucial to ensuring the Union’s economic prosperity and that of enterprises across the EU, after the UK has left.
The Minister has emphasised that “it is crucial that our fellow EU Member States fully appreciate, at the highest levels, the potential impacts for Ireland at the earliest stage, before the detailed negotiation process that will prepare the terms for the UK’s departure and its future relationship with the Union.”
The Minister will discuss important trade and single market issues, including progress on the EU’s global trade negotiations, and the Commission’s initiatives to achieve progress on strengthening Europe’s Single Market, especially for services. The Minister will be underlining Irish support for the EU’s trade agenda in order to ensure that Irish exporters gain greater market share in existing markets and improved terms of entry to new markets, and urging progress on the EU’s trade negotiations.
Minister Mitchell O’Connor said she will “stress the importance of the Brexit negotiations taking full account of the impact on Ireland in relation to the economic and employment context, our desire to minimise the impact of any potential customs controls, and the competitiveness challenge”.
The Minister will also travel to Copenhagen next week (29 March) to meet with her Danish counterpart, Minister Brian Mikkelsen, Minister for Industry, Business and Financial Affairs as part of her programme of engagement with EU political counterparts on the trade, enterprise and Brexit agenda.
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