Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Alliance Party build North South relations at Oireachtas, Dublin

Pictured after a lively Sub-Committee meeting,
that rounded off a week of debate on the Fiscal Treaty are (L to R)
Roderic O'Gorman (Green Party), Sub-Committee Chairman
Dominic Hannigan TD, Cllr Andrew Muir (Alliance)
and Declan Ganley (Libertas)
I represented the Alliance Party at the Oireachtas last week as discussions continue concerning the EU Fiscal Treaty Referendum which will be held on 31 May 2012.

In advance of the Referendum the Irish Parliament has established a Sub Committee to consider the Treaty and host a debate about its implication for both Ireland and the EU.

The Committee heard from a range of people during the week including myself as Alliance Party Vice Chair on Thursday 5 April 2012.

Addressing the Committee, I stated "Since our formation in 1970 Alliance has been a pro-European and internationalist party and have always placed great store in the importance of strong North/South links and cooperation."

Commenting on the EU Fiscal Treaty, I remarked "Alliance is supportive of an enhanced role for the European Union in providing fiscal stability. Within our mutual interdependence lies the most effective response to the new realities. The upcoming referendum is clearly a decision for the Irish electorate. However, the Alliance Party would urge them to consider voting 'Yes'. Recent figures show that just under two fifths of Northern Ireland's exports go to the Republic of Ireland. A Yes vote will give the markets confidence and hopefully provide the basis for increased cross border trade."

Concluding, I sated "In the current economic climate it has never been so important to explore more practical ways in which we can increase cooperation to grow our economies, strengthen our societies and deliver public services more efficiently. Beyond the Treaty and after the Referendum we are aware that Ireland will hold the presidency of the European Union next year. We look forward to that opportunity for us to explore enhanced North/South links between our regions and continuing the dialogue"

Committee known as Oireachtas Sub-Committee on the Referendum on the Intergovernmental Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union More info at http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/mediazone/pressreleases/name-7477-en.html Facebook site at https://www.facebook.com/EUAffairsCommittee