From top: Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Eamon Ryan; Minister for Foreign Affairs Trade Simon Coveney; Tanaiste Leo Varadkar and Taoiseach Micheal Martin.
Government Buildings, Dublin 2.
A media briefing on the publication of the government’s 2020 Brexit Readiness Action Plan ahead of the end of the ‘Transition Period’ on December 31 and building on earlier Action Plans of December 2018 and July 2019.
Action plan here.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has announced that Mairead McGuinness is to be Ireland’s new European Commissioner.
She will take over the Financial Services, Financial Stability and Capital Markets Union portfolio.
Former Latvian prime minister Valdis Dombrovskis has been given the Trade portfolio, left vacant following the resignation of Phil Hogan….
EC President names McGuinness as Ireland’s commissioner (RTÉ)
Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe
Government Buildings. Dublin 2.
Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe announced that tax revenues were down 18.6% – or €983 million – compared to July last year. ..
Further to yesterday’s EU €750 billion coronavirus bailout….
[pro-Brexit] Euro Guido writes:
Ireland, with 1% of the EU’s population, is going to be the fifth biggest contributor to the EU bailout…
Yesterday: Make Out Like Bandits
There you go now.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, center with French President Emmanuel Macron, right, and Taoiseach Micheal Martin, left, during a round table meeting at an EU summit in Brussels, Belgium yesterday
The €750 billion deal was sealed after intense negotiation that saw a threats of a French walkout and a Hungarian veto – and fierce opposition from the Netherlands and Austria to too generous a package.
Summit chairman Charles Michel tweeted “Deal” shortly after the 27 leaders finally reached agreement at a plenary session.
“This agreement sends a concrete signal that Europe is a force for action,” Mr Michel said at a dawn news conference.
Was the miniature defiant tricolour really necessary?
EU reaches deal on post-pandemic recovery package (RTÉ)
The 27-member bloc is expected to give outline approval to leisure or business travel from tomorrow to 14 countries beyond its borders when they vote on the list, the diplomats said.
The countries are Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay, they said.
Russia and Brazil, along with the United States, are among countries that do not make the initial “safe list”.
The vote is aimed at supporting the EU travel industry and tourist destinations, particularly countries in southern Europe hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Russia, Brazil and USA.
Not political at all.
US reported not on EU ‘safe’ travel list (RTÉ)
Ireland’s EU Commissioner Phil Hogan has confirmed his candidacy to be the next head of the World Trade Organisation.
And finally, monsieur, a wafer-thin mint…
Speaking in Brussels Mr Hogan said: “I’m exploring the option of being a candidate for the director general of the WTO [World Trade Organisation]
“I think there’s an important amount of work to be done to reform the organisation, to make it more effective and efficient, but also to deal with many of the important trade issues that are bedevilling the international community now arising from Covid-19,” he said.
Phil Hogan confirms candidacy to be next head of WTO (RTE)
The European Commission has been urged not to soften its stance on EU rules that would outlaw the export of cyber surveillance tools to despotic regimes worldwide, amid ongoing negotiations between the European Council and Parliament on the new measures.
A coalition of EU human rights organisations have penned a letter to European Commissioner for Trade Phil Hogan, imploring him not to backtrack on the Commission’s original position on the regulation on dual-use goods, which aims to clamp down on exports that can be used in the surveillance of citizens in countries with less than democratic regimes.
Commission urged not to backtrack on EU spyware rules (Euractiv.com)
Pic via Politik
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe
The Irish Times reports:
Euro zone finance ministers reached a compromise on Thursday to break days of stalemate over how to respond to an economic downturn that threatens to be the worst since the Great Depression in the 1930s.
Under the deal, which amounts to €500 billion in a range of tools, states can borrow from the European Stability Mechanism bailout fund to finance spending needed to overcome the crisis.
…But it dashed the hopes of Italy, Ireland, Spain and six other member states that had called for eurobonds to bring down borrowing costs and send a signal of unity as the continent confronts a health crisis that threatens to become an economic disaster.
Meanwhile, RTÉ reports:
He said it is very possible that Ireland will need to access funds from the European Investment Bank to help fund companies and will consider whether to access the programme to help fund wage subsidy schemes.
It is hoped that it will not need to use the fund from the European Stability Mechanism, he [Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe] added.
He said a new Government in Ireland must have a stable majority but must reflect the hopes and fears of the electorate when they voted.
Euro finance ministers agree €500bn package to address pandemic fallout (Naomi Leary, The Irish Times)
Ireland may need limited access to new EU Covid-19 rescue package, minister says (RTÉ)
Purchased in Donnybrook, Dublin 4.
Six of one half and half a dozen of the other?
We may never know.
Pic by Nick