New Ireland Commission to hold 'Our Place in Europe' event in Newry

Cllr Pete Byrne (SDLP).Cllr Pete Byrne (SDLP).
Cllr Pete Byrne (SDLP).
The New Ireland Commission will hold a discussion in Newry’s Canal Court Hotel on Thursday, May 16.

The event will focus on the importance of promoting connectivity across our island, removing barriers to cross-border work and trade and discuss the possibility of a return to the European Union for the North.

It will include a discussion between EMI CEO Noelle O’Connell and SDLP Newry Councillor Doire Finn, with extended remarks from South Armagh SDLP Councillor Pete Byrne.

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The New Ireland Commission is an SDLP initiative for new-thinking, ambition & imagination. The aim, through citizen engagement, is to create an ambitious blueprint of options & possibilities for how we can achieve a sustainable and inclusive New Ireland.

Cllr Byrne said: “Bringing the New Ireland Commission to Newry is an important opportunity to discuss our shared future and the huge opportunity for this community and the whole of the North in returning to the European Union. As someone who runs their own business, I understand the complex relationships between businesses and communities across the border region and the consequences of those relationships being disrupted by the Brexit process.

“I’m delighted that we’re engaging with European Movement Ireland to have these conversations and to bring such an important subject to the forefront of people’s minds. The rebuilding and renewal of our European partnerships is essential to ensuring that people and businesses in this region get access to the best opportunities possible.”

Ms O’Connell commented: “As CEO of European Movement Ireland I have travelled across the island of Ireland and listened to how Brexit has impacted on the relationships that were being built between communities and across the border.

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“Europe is a crucial focal point to everything on these islands. Whether trade, third level education, agriculture, or infrastructure, our relationship with Europe is key to reaching our full potential. As an organisation founded to promote debate and dialogue on matters European, I’m glad that the New Ireland Commission is so keen to start a dialogue on how we can develop our relationships with European partners in order to create opportunity for every community right across our island.”

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