Wednesday 17 January 2018

'Immediate danger to Ireland', warns MEP

Warning: Brian Hayes
Warning: Brian Hayes

Kevin Doyle Group Political Editor

FINE Gael MEP Brian Hayes has described the outcome of the UK referendum on the European Union as “a bridge to the unknown”.

Mr Hayes warned that the Euro/Sterling exchange rate is an “immediate danger” to Ireland.

“Britain’s decision to leave the EU is a massive political earthquake. The shock waves of this decision will unfold in the days and months ahead,” he said this morning.

“Ireland is right to be worried and apprehensive. As our single most important trading partner, Britain’s decision leaves us vulnerable to negative currency fluctuations.”

He said a fall in the value of sterling will have “extremely negative” consequences for Irish exports to Britain, while tourism will also be hit.

“A bridge into the unknown has been crossed. Britain’s decision to leave is a real threat to the future of the EU. There are also risks to the stability and cohesion of the UK itself. Britain and Europe must now begin the long and complex process of establishing a new political and economic relationship,” he said.

The MEP for Dublin added that Ireland must now defend its own interests.

“Ireland will also need to be extremely mindful of British/Irish relationships and the rapidly changing dynamics of internal UK politics. Above all this is a time for clear thinking and calm heads.”

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