The strong links between Britain and Fingal were highlighted today when the British Ambassador to Ireland, Robin Barnett CMG, visited Fingal County Council’s offices at County Hall, Swords.
At a meeting in the Council Chamber, the Ambassador had a question and answer session with stakeholders during which he heard the concerns of political representatives and business leaders in Fingal about Brexit.
Earlier, Fingal County Council’s Chief Executive Paul Reid, and its Director of Economic, Enterprise and Tourism, Ed Hearne, gave the Ambassador an insight into the county and the role that the Council plays in building sustainable communities and making it easier for people to do business.
The British Ambassador to Ireland, Robin Barnett CMG, (centre) with, from left, Darragh O'Brien, TD, the Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Darragh Butler, Fingal County Council Chief Executive Paul Reid and Ed Hearne, Director of Economic, Enterprise and Tourism at Fingal County Council. Photo by Kevin McFeeley.
Mr Reid said that the Council was delighted Ambassador Barnett had chosen to visit the Council and hoped it would be the start of a fruitful relationship.
“The visit allowed us to give the Ambassador a sense of what we do here in Fingal and the concerns that people have about Brexit. He suggested potential opportunities to strengthen the already strong links between Fingal and Britain and we are certainly open to exploring them along with the relevant stakeholders,” said Mr Reid.
The Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Darragh Butler, said: “The key message is that Fingal is open for business. We will be working to ensure that Fingal continues to prosper and our citizens benefit from the agreements that are reached over the next few years. We have strong and very direct links with Britain and we want these to continue and develop.”
In his address to the meeting, Ambassador Barnett noted that Fingal is a very important economic driver not just for Dublin but for Ireland and said its strengths included industries such as Med-Tech, Life Sciences and Agri-Business. He also expressed optimism about of the Brexit negotiations and the opportunity presented to strengthen the relationship betwen Britain and Ireland.
He concluded by saying he appreciated the openness and frankness of the meeting and said his door was open to future engagement as he saw the meeting being the start of a stronger relationship between Britain and Fingal.
After his visit to Fingal County Council, Ambassador Barnett visited two local businesses – Country Crest and One4All – before attending a business lunch in Malahide Castle which was organised by the Council’s Economic Enterprise and Tourism Development Department and Fingal Dublin Chamber of Commerce.