Friday 21 October 2016

Ireland demanding package from EU to beat Brexit fallout

Economy and peace on the line - Kenny

Kevin Doyle and Colm Kelpie

Published 28/06/2016 | 02:30

Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Pic Tom Burke
Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Pic Tom Burke

Brexit has opened up a fault line across the Irish economy, Taoiseach Enda Kenny will tell EU leaders today in Brussels.

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Mr Kenny will make it plain that the peace process could also be in jeopardy if the Border is reinstated, as he meets the leaders of the 28 EU countries to demand that Ireland should be treated as a special case following Britain's vote to withdraw.

Mr Kenny will emphasise that Brexit is a political and economic earthquake for Ireland due to our close trade links and social ties with Britain.

"The stakes have always been higher on this issue for Ireland than for any other EU member state," the Taoiseach told the Dáil yesterday.

In a direct challenge to some EU leaders, who want a scorched earth policy in relation to Britain, Mr Kenny will argue that Ireland's relationship with the UK - even if it is no longer an EU member - should be protected on the basis of:

■ Our inter-linked economies and the relative importance of each other's markets for trade;

■ Northern Ireland, the Peace Process and British-Irish relations;

■ The Common Travel Area and our shared land border;

■ The role of the UK within the EU and its strategic value to Ireland in that context.

Part of the Irish strategy is to 'bat for Britain' because any 'punishment' for voting to leave the EU will have a negative effect on trade here.

Irish Independent

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