The Government has announced that its message around the world for St Patrick’s Day will be: “Now is the time to invest in Ireland’s recovery.”
Announcing this year’s programme, the Taoiseach said: “The Government will use the unique global opportunity of St Patrick’s Day to bring that message to all our key global markets and to Ireland’s many friends around the world.
The clear message from the Invest in Ireland event hosted by former President Bill Clinton in New York recently was that investors have faith in Ireland and in our capacity to bring about economic recovery. That message was echoed by the Chinese Vice-President, Xi Jinping, during his recent visit.”
In the report of the Second Global Irish Economic Forum held in Dublin Castle last October, St Patrick’s Day was identified as ‘a unique asset for Ireland’ that should be utilised fully as an opportunity to extract the maximum marketing effect for the country.
The Taoiseach will travel to Washington, DC as the guest of President Obama for the traditional St Patrick’s Day celebrations in the White House.
He will also attend the Speakers Lunch on Capitol Hill, hosted by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, John Boehner, as well as meeting Vice-President Biden and other US leaders.
Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore, who will visit Canada, said: “St Patrick’s Day is a unique opportunity to promote Ireland abroad. Few, if any, other countries have a national day that is so widely known and celebrated across the entire globe. As a country we should maximise the value we get from such global attention and goodwill. Visits by Ministers to key countries around St Patrick’s Day increase the attention, publicity and promotion which Ireland gets.”
Other key points of the Taoiseach’s programme in the United States will be:
– Chicago, where he will meet Mayor Rahm Emmanuel and other political and business leaders, participate in the Chicago St Patrick’s Day Parade, and address the Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago St Patrick’s Day Dinner
– the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, home of the “Fighting Irish”, where he will address faculty and students. The University of Notre Dame will be taking part in a College American Football game against Navy at the Aviva Stadium on September 1st. Thousands of US fans will be travelling to Dublin for the occasion
– New York City, where he will meet business leaders on March 19th, which has been designated “Ireland Day” at the New York Stock Exchange
– a number of other events to promote trade, tourism and investment in Ireland.
Other key trading partners included in the ministerial programme of visits include China, Silicon Valley, Germany, Britain, France and Italy.
The Taoiseach has asked Ministers to include as many business, trade, tourism and investment promotion opportunities as possible in their programmes. He has directed that travel and other costs be kept to the minimum necessary.
Ministers will travel to 15 of our key trading partners and undertake programmes in 7 locations in the US.