Irish Prime Minister, Enda Kenny TD, gave an overview of Brexit to the Annual President's Dinner of the Irish Business and Employers' Confederation ("IBEC") which is the Irish member of BUSINESS EUROPE. The key points from his speech, from a Brexit perspective, were:
- "With Brexit and rising international economic and political uncertainty now is not the time for risks" so the upcoming Irish Budget will be cautious in that respect.
- "The event that will have the most profound impact on Ireland is undoubtedly the result of the Brexit referendum."
- "Of course, while we in Ireland were disappointed with the referendum outcome, the democratic decision of the UK to leave the European Union is one that we accept."
- "But we cannot deny the range and extent of the challenges it presents to everyone on these islands, in Europe, and beyond."
- "The challenges involved are as complicated as they are unprecedented."
- "The Irish Government has clearly set out its priorities in the context of the upcoming negotiations. First and foremost, Ireland remains completely committed to our membership of the European Union and the eurozone. Our priorities for the negotiations relate to the economy and trade, to Northern Ireland and the peace process, to the common travel area and to the future of the EU itself."
- I will travel to Bratislava for tomorrow’s first ever Summit of 27 EU leaders. What I pointed out as a possibility in Belfast in the run-up to the referendum has now come to pass – I will be the only leader from these islands at the table."
- "[N]o one should underestimate the commitment of the 27 EU member states to maintaining the European Union. The EU is the answer to so many historic questions for Europe. That is why nobody should think that the negotiations ahead will be easy, or that they can be viewed through a purely economic lens. For the remaining EU members, there are matters of historic and fundamental importance at stake. It will be a hard bargain to strike."
- "I also want to provide a message of reassurance regarding our corporation tax regime of which there has been much debate about in recent weeks. I cannot be more categorical in stating that our statute based 12.5% corporation tax rate remains a cornerstone of Irish industrial policy and will not change. Our right to set our own tax rate is enshrined in European Treaties."