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Irish and UK Ministers hold talks on single market and trade

24.01.2013, 17:51 GMT

Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, today (Thursday) met his counterpart, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills Dr Vince Cable MP for talks on issues of mutual interest as well as priorities for the Irish EU Presidency.

Among the matters discussed were the jobs and growth potential of the Single Market and important EU trade negotiations that are underway, such as those with Canada and India.  Ministers also discussed the benefits to growth and jobs that will flow from future EU trade agreements such as that with the U.S – which could provide benefits of over €120billion per annum to the EU economy.

The driving focus of the Irish Presidency is Jobs, Stability and Growth. The benefit to the EU economy from all potential Free Trade Agreements, currently in discussion or planned, is approximately 2 million jobs.

Speaking after the meeting, Minister Bruton said:

“The driving focus of the Irish Presidency is Jobs, Stability and Growth. The benefit to the EU economy from all potential Free Trade Agreements, currently in discussion or planned, is approximately 2 million jobs. There are also major potential benefits to the Irish economy. That is why we have identified making progress on these issues as a key priority during the Irish Presidency.

“Today I was very happy to have the opportunity to discuss these and other issues with Secretary of State Cable. The United Kingdom shares many of our views on issues within our briefs, including crucial issues such as global trade and the single market, areas where there is great potential to contribute to growth and job-creation within the EU. The UK is a hugely important partner for Ireland, and I look forward to continuing to work closely with Secretary Cable on issues of mutual interest, both on a bilateral basis and within the EU”.

Secretary of State Cable said:

“Today's meeting was very useful and constructive. It was good to discuss how we can work together to improve trade and tackle problems in the economy.

"The UK and Ireland are already major trading partners. I am keen we continue to build on this through our shared commitment to open markets, and exports as a driver of growth and jobs."

The meeting comes as Minister Bruton returns from Brussels after a series of presentations and question and answer sessions over two days with five European Parliamentary Committees all of which have relevance to the three EU Council formations which he will be chairing or co-chairing over the coming six months. Minister Bruton’s appearance has strengthened the already very cordial relations between him and the relevant Committee Chairs and Rapporteurs. The Minister emphasised the importance of the Parliament’s role as co-decision makers which plays a vital role in the democratic process at EU level representing the citizens of Europe.


Minister Bruton will be responsible for chairing meetings of the Trade, Competitiveness and EPSCO (Employment and Social Policy) Councils for the period of the Irish Presidency.

In Brussels on Tuesday and Wednesday Minister Bruton addressed the following five committees: Legal Affairs; Internal Market and Consumer Protection; Employment and Social Affairs; International Trade; Industry, Research and Energy.



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Press Office, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation




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