Thursday, 29 April 2021

Questions (4)

Catherine Connolly

Question:

4. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment further to Parliamentary Question No. 166 of 21 April 2021, concerning the announcement by the IDA that it plans to appoint a consultant in Israel, the systems and processes in place to ensure that enterprises which break international law and operate in the illegal Israeli settlements are excluded from consideration by the IDA; the way in which the Irish public can be reassured that a State agency funded by taxpayers and for which he has responsibility is fully compliant with Ireland’s international legal and moral obligations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22485/21]

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Written answers (Question to Enterprise)

IDA Ireland’s overseas teams and office network are vital to support the agency’s efforts in winning new Foreign Direct Investment across the world.  From time-to-time the Agency seeks to expand its global network of offices and teams.  Many firms are looking to expand into new markets and Ireland is a proven location for global companies to grow and serve their customer base in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

As an Agency of my Department, I expect IDA Ireland to act in line with Government policy and the Agency has assured me that this is the case.  IDA Ireland respects obligations under Irish and International law.  IDA Ireland is in the process of selecting a part time Business Development Consultant to assist it in attracting investment into Ireland from companies headquartered in Israel and have advised that any new arrangements with Consultants working for the Agency will adhere to Irish Government policy. 

Ireland’s position on the illegality of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory informs our engagement with the State of Israel across a range of bilateral issues, including trade, and will continue to do so. Ireland distinguishes between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967. 

Ireland is wholly opposed to Israeli settlements, which are contrary to international law, and are damaging to the prospects of peace.

UN Security Council Resolution 2334, adopted on 23 December 2016, calls on all States to distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967. This Resolution reflected the position already held by Ireland, the EU and the UN for many years.

Ireland consistently raises human rights issues in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory at the highest international levels, including most recently at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council. 

Ireland remains steadfast in its support for a comprehensive two state solution which protects the future of both the Palestinian and Israeli peoples.