31/03/2009

Executive Leaders Meet EC President

Stormont top executives, Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness have been having talks today on how the NI Assembly can maximise the funding it gets from Europe.

They travelled to Brussels to meet European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, (pictured above).

Accompanied by Junior Ministers Jeffrey Donaldson and Gerry Kelly, they presented the Executive's Action Plan outlining its priorities for future European policy and funding.
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The plan is the Executive's response to the report delivered by the Commission Task Force established by President Barroso in May 2007 and displays the Executive’s commitment to working with Europe, making the most of the opportunities offered to benefit our citizens.

Peter Robinson said: "We very much welcome President Barroso's interest and commitment to Northern Ireland.

"In coming to Brussels to present our action plan we are demonstrating that we are working positively with our European partners to increase prosperity for all in Northern Ireland."

Also commenting, Martin McGuinness said: "We offer one of the most competitive business opportunities in western Europe and we want Europe to recognise that we are a dynamic, innovative region with a tremendous amount to offer."

(BMcC/JM)

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