Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Questions (32, 33)

Richard Boyd Barrett


32. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Taoiseach if he will report on his recent trip to the United States of America and the meetings he attended. [13969/19]

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Richard Boyd Barrett


33. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Taoiseach if he will report on the issues he raised with President Trump during his recent visit to the White House. [12373/19]

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Written answers (Question to Taoiseach)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 32 and 33 together.

In Washington D.C. I had a series of political discussions and meetings, including with President Trump, Vice President Pence, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senator Patrick Leahy and Congressmen Richie Neal and Peter King.

In each meeting, we discussed the Ireland - US bilateral relationship, including the importance of the two-way economic relationship.

I outlined the Government's position on Brexit, and thanked representatives of the Administration and Congress for their continued backing for the Northern Ireland Peace Process.

On Immigration, I expressed the Government's appreciation for the backing received both from the Administration and across the aisles in Congress for the E3 Bill last year, and highlighted the continued problems facing the undocumented Irish in the US.

In Washington D.C. I also attended a series of events hosted by the US Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland.

I also attended a number of events including the White House St. Patrick's Day reception; a breakfast event hosted by the Vice President, and receptions hosted by the Irish Ambassador and by the Ireland Funds.

In Chicago, I had a meeting with a number of emigrant support groups that receive Irish Government funding, and had the opportunity to reaffirm the Government's commitment to finding a resolution to the status of the undocumented.

I also met with political leaders including Governor Jay Pritzker and Mayor Emanuel, where we discussed bilateral relations and topical issues including Brexit.

I attended Chicago's annual St. Patrick’s Day events, including a dinner hosted by the Irish Fellowship Club, mass in Old St. Patrick's church, and the Chicago Parade.

Finally, I launched Tourism Ireland's new publication marking the 10th anniversary of the Global Greening Initiative.

Questions Nos. 34 and 35 resubmitted.