North-South Ministerial Council to meet next week in Armagh and will be the Taoiseach’s last official engagement

The North-South Ministerial Council is due to meet on Monday 8 April in what will be Leo Varadkar's last official engagement as Taoiseach; The last meeting of the joint council was in July 2021.

The North-South Ministerial Council will meet on Monday 8 April in what will be Taoiseach Leo Varadkar‘s last official engagement.

The twenty-sixth meeting of the council took place in July 2021 and it was the last time they met since the collapse of power-sharing in Northern Ireland.

That meeting was chaired by Michael Martin who was Taoiseach at the time, and then First Minister Paul Givan and Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill attended on behalf of the Northern Ireland Executive.

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood called for the urgent restoration of the North South Ministerial Council in March when the first meeting of the new East West Council was held in London

When the MP for Foyle called for the restoration of the North-South council he said that the Social Democratic & Labour Party (SDLP) would write to the First and Deputy First Ministers and the Irish Government.

The meeting next week will hear details of a progress report on economic matters and North-South co-operation, also planning for a series of ministerial-level sectoral meetings, according to the Irish Times.

A spokesperson said that there are urgent decisions to be made – including the filling of vacancies on the boards of the North-South bodies.

They continued by saying that the meeting comes against the backdrop of the Irish Government’s “very significant” announcement of €800 million funding for projects in the North, including the A5 road, under the Shared Island initiative.

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