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Minister Byrne accompanies the Taoiseach at the European Council

Minister of State for European Affairs Thomas Byrne accompanies the Taoiseach at the European Council


Speaking in Brussels, Minister Byrne said:


“This is a key meeting of the European Council which will address a number of issues of vital importance to Ireland and the EU, including COVID-19, Climate Change and the EU’s future budget.


Leaders will also be briefed at the Council by President von der Leyen on her discussions this week with UK Prime Minister Johnson. An EU-UK Agreement remains in all our best interests and the EU is determined to keep working to achieve this until the last possible minute


On Covid, coordination, partnership and solidarity among Partners have been crucial this year as we have sought to deal with the devastating consequences of the pandemic. I have no doubt that such cooperation and solidarity will continue to be evident at this Council as we prepare to begin roll-out of vaccines and ensure Europe’s citizens are fully and accurately informed about the next steps in our battle against the virus.


The Council is also due to agree new, ambitious targets for combatting climate change. The EU’s Green Deal represents a key element in chartering our post-pandemic recovery. I also hope that the European Council can give final agreement to the next EU Budget and to the €1.8 trillion recovery package agreed last July and which will be central to driving our own economic recovery and those of all the other Member States.”

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