Tuesday, 16 June 2020

Questions (22)

Micheál Martin

Question:

22. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he has spoken with his other EU counterparts recently regarding Brexit. [10641/20]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

The Taoiseach, my cabinet colleagues and I take every opportunity to engage with our EU partners to advance Ireland’s priorities in matters arising from the UK's withdrawal from the EU, including the EU-UK Future Partnership negotiations, and implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement, with the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland.

My engagement with key interlocutors on Brexit has continued in recent months, including recent contacts with EU Chief Negotiator Michel Barnier, and with a range of EU Foreign Ministers.  I have also spoken, as appropriate, with UK counterparts, including Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Brandon Lewis. This is in addition to the regular contact maintained between the Taoiseach, the Minister for Finance, and the Minister of State for European Affairs, with their counterparts across the EU and in the UK.  

The EU-UK future relationship is on the agenda of the informal meeting of Europe Ministers on 16 June and it is also expected to be discussed at the meeting of Heads of State and Government on 19 June.  A High Level Conference between the EU and the UK on 15 June assessed progress made to date in the Future Partnership negotiations.

Officials from across Government are continuing their work to make sure that Ireland’s voice is heard at these negotiations in line with the EU’s negotiating mandate, and that work to implement the Protocol on Ireland / Northern Ireland is taken forward. In this regard, Ireland again participated in the second meeting of the Joint Committee, on 12 June, as part of the EU delegation. The Government will continue to engage closely and work with the Taskforce and the Commission, our EU partners, and stakeholders across this island on this vital issue.