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10/04/2012 12:00:00 AM


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Creighton, Lucinda

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Address by H.E. Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament

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Address by H.E. Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament

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Address by H.E. Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament

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Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Lucinda Creighton)

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Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Lucinda Creighton)

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Lucinda Creighton

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Snippet Contents:

I am pleased to join my colleagues in the Houses of Parliament to welcome Mr. Schulz. This is a great opportunity to celebrate once again our strong and deepening relationship with the European Parliament, which we consider to be vital. When the Government came into office last year, one of the first things we did was to hold in this Chamber for the first time a joint sitting of the Irish MEPs and Members of the Dáil and Seanad.
Today’s proceedings mark the first address to Dáil Éireann by a President of the European Parliament and this is very important in the context of our relationship with that body. It is fitting that Mr. Schulz is with us, not only because Ireland will assume the role of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers in a few short months, but also because it represents a unique opportunity for the President of the European Parliament to address the representatives of the Irish people and, in turn, hear their views, as Mr. Schulz has been doing. This is particularly important at a time of significant challenge - as has been stated by every speaker - as we confront and overcome the difficulties imposed by the impact of the crisis in the eurozone, including continuing to meet exacting targets in successfully implementing an extremely challenging programme of economic reform.
As a passionate believer in the European project and the immense value of the European Parliament, I intend to focus my remarks on its role, which has been, and rightly so, considerably enhanced in recent years. The European Parliament is rightly proud of its status as the only directly elected EU institution. It is on the front line of democracy as a place where we debate the impact of policies on our day to day lives.