Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Questions (127, 128, 134, 135)

Micheál Martin

Question:

127. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach the issues that were discussed at the May EU Council meeting; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23612/14]

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Micheál Martin

Question:

128. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach if he had any bilaterals when he was in Brussels on 27 May; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23613/14]

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Micheál Martin

Question:

134. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach the discussions he has had at the May EU Council meeting regarding the EU digital economy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24097/14]

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Micheál Martin

Question:

135. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach the specific areas on unemployment that were discussed at the May EU Council meeting; the actions to be taken; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24098/14]

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Written answers (Question to Taoiseach)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 127, 128, 134 and 135 together.

I attended the Informal meeting of Heads of State or Government in Brussels on 27 May. We discussed the results of the European Parliament elections, and the process for the election of the new President of the European Commission. In that regard, and in line with the procedures set out in the Treaty on European Union, Heads of State or Government tasked President Van Rompuy to consult with the presidents of the new political groups, and to report back to the European Council.

We also had an initial discussion on the Union's future priorities and strategic agenda for the period ahead. There was general agreement that we must maintain the focus on growth and jobs.

We must also continue the work on strengthening the Economic and Monetary Union while respecting and preserving the unity of the wider EU. The need for a strong, united response to climate change, and to reduce the EU's energy dependency, was highlighted. Leaders also welcomed the successful Presidential election in Ukraine. Finally, we also discussed the recent flooding in the Balkans. While I did not have any separate bilateral meetings, I did of course see all of my colleagues at the meeting.