Our member, Cllr Erin McGreehan (Fianna Fail), writing to Josep Borrell, Vice-President of the European Commission and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security, says Dundalk is the “ideal alternative location” for such an office, after the British government refused a request from the European Union to open a new office in Northern Ireland last week.

Writing in her capacity as member of the European Committee of the Regions and of Louth County Council’s Economic Development and Enterprise Support Committee,Councillor McGreehan expressed her disappointment that the UK government refused an EU request to locate an office in Belfast. She wrote to Josep Borrell, Vice-President of the European Commission, on this matter, and offered a local solution by suggesting her city of Dundalk – which is on the border with Northern Ireland, strategically located half-way on the road between Belfast and Dublin – for opening a new office.

Councillor McGreehan:

Article 12 of the Irish protocol states that EU officials shall have the right to be present during any checks and controls carried out by British authorities. Indeed, such a presence is vital for the good functioning of the protocol, and therefore to preserve the integrity of the EU Single Market 

Putting forward a solution that she says could solve the issue, she informed Vice-President Borrell that Dundalk, a vibrant town hosting major international companies, providing easy access to the whole of Northern Ireland and less than an hour from Dublin airport, would be an ideal alternative location:  

Dundalk has a major stake in ensuring that future relations between Ireland and the UK remain smooth and friendly. [Choosing Dundalk] would facilitate the work of EU officials tasked with observing the checks and controls. I believe that locating the office in Dundalk will cover the needs of the EU, while avoiding the sensitivities that exist in the UK over this matter.

READ THE FULL LETTER:

Letter McGreehan-Borrell Dundalk apr2020 

IN THE PRESS:

Dundalk Democrat

Louth/Now