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Thomas Byrne, T.D., appointed as Minister of State for European Affairs

Thomas Byrne, T.D., has been appointed Minister of State for European Affairs.  Speaking today at the Department of Foreign Affairs, Minister Byrne said:


I am delighted to be taking on the role as the Minister of State for European Affairs. I look forward to working with my EU colleagues on a number of key issues for Ireland – most immediately the negotiations for the new EU Budget (Multiannual Financial Framework) where I will emphasise the importance of maintaining and safeguarding the CAP.


I will also work with partners on our response to the economic and social challenges arising from the COVID-19 Pandemic. Ireland greatly appreciates the strong EU support and solidarity, including the crisis response package of economic and financial assistance totalling more than €540 billion already agreed by the European Council. The “Next Generation EU” Recovery Fund is another important element of the EU’s support for recovery.  All Europeans are affected by this crisis and so we must work together to forge a path to recovery that will deliver real benefits to all our citizens.


Brexit and the outcome of the current negotiation process between the EU and the UK remains a vital focus in the coming months. Preparing for the end of transition is a national priority and I will be working closely with the Taoiseach, Minister Coveney, other colleagues across government and my European counterparts to plan and be ready for this next phase of the Brexit process.”  


Press Office
2 July 2020

Note to Editors

Minister Byrne will represent Ireland in the General Affairs Council. This Council is mainly made up of European Affairs Ministers from all Member States. It coordinates preparations for European Council meetings. It deals with a number of cross-cutting policy areas including the multiannual financial framework, enlargement and any issue entrusted to it by the European Council.  The next meeting of the General Affairs Council is 15 July 2020.

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