MEPs Walsh and Markey host Future of Europe debate

THE impact of Brexit on Ireland and the EU and Europe’s long-term recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic will be debated during an online event hosted by Fine Gael MEPs for Midlands North West, Maria Walsh and Colm Markey, on Tuesday, January 25, at 7 p.m.

The programme will feature introductory video messages from An Tánaiste and President of Fine Gael, Leo Varadkar, and the President of the European Commission, Ursula von Der Leyen. Guest speakers include former Northern editor with RTÉ, Tommie Gorman, and youth representative with the National Youth Council of Ireland, Mark McNulty.

“Ireland benefited from unwavering EU support during the Brexit negotiations. Our concerns have always been given the greatest consideration and Ireland will always have that support as a valued EU Member. But make no mistake about it, Brexit has been a wake-up call for the EU,” said Colm Markey ahead of the online conference.

“In representing the border counties in our Midlands North West constituency, we cannot discuss the future of Europe without examining the impact Brexit is having on the island of Ireland and the wider Union in terms of political implications. Another key concern is achieving important EU environmental goals while sustaining a vibrant agri-food sector across Ireland,” he added.

For Maria Walsh, engaging with young people is also absolutely necessary when talking about the future of Europe.

“While we must focus our efforts on recovering from the impact of Covid-19 across society, and pursuing the benefits of creating a closer Health Union, ending the mental health pandemic must be a clear priority”, said Walsh, co-chair of the MEP Alliance for Mental Health.

Panel discussions will focus on job creation and economic recovery, support for youth, climate change and agriculture, and other issues.

Watch this Future of Europe event hosted by Fine Gael MEPs (Seán Kelly, Deirdre Clune, Frances Fitzgerald, Maria Walsh and Colm Markey) on