Ireland looks beyond the EU to forge new trade links

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The Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade has created a number of posts in mostly non-EU locations, as Ireland looks to broaden and establish new links beyond the Union.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Charlie Flanagan announced the scheme after a special meeting of the Export Trade Council yesterday - the new posts are located in Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia and Romania.

He met with the heads of State agencies involved in promoting trade in the wake of the UK's decision to leave the EU.

"In line with the intensification of this government policy, I have recently created new commercial attaché posts in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia and Romania, to enhance market access for Irish companies as part of my Department's new economic diplomacy strategy," he said.

"In previous discussions at the Council, we identified market diversification as key mitigating factors in regard to risks to our economy," Mr Flanagan continued.

Keeping pace

The National Competitive Council has warned that Ireland's hopes for full employment and lasting recovery are "under serious and imminent threat".

The council's annual report has warned that factors such as the weakened euro and low energy prices make for an uncertain future for the country.

It also cited the UK's decision to leave the European Union as an economic challenge that needs "a determined response to enhance Ireland's national competitiveness".

The National Competitive Council is calling for investment in infrastructure to support essential public services and increased support for innovation and productivity.

The report stated, "As a small open economy, external threats such as financial market volatility and the fragile global economy are now exacerbated by the uncertain consequences of the British decision to leave the EU."

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