Ireland and the Atlantic Connection

Ireland and the Atlantic Connection

Length: 80 minutes

With the United Kingdom outside the EU, Ireland will assume a very important role in the so-called “Atlantic Connection”, in other words, the relationship with the United States. There are a number of strategic issues that link the island on the Western edge of the EU and Washington, from the language to the culture, from politics to economy. Moreover, the new president of the USA talks proudly of his Irish origins and claimed that Ireland will be a special interlocutor in Europe during his Administration.

The closeness to the US and Brexit will open up a set of new chances for the Dublin government, that has a big opportunity to position the country at the centre of the European decision-making process for the time on. Ireland has, in fact, a very open economy, with clear stances when it comes to regulation and tax harmonisation. Ireland is a country of approximately 5 million inhabitants with a strong Anglo-Saxon political tradition and solid pro-European feelings, a fact that might help the creation of new alliances and balances inside the EU. Ireland also holds a very defined position when it comes to foreign policy and defence, that are very crucial points of the EU integration process. Ireland is also the only EU country which shares a border with the UK and any kind of new relationship between London and Brussels could not avoid to take into consideration Dublin’s main interests. The Irish border issue will most probably shape not only Ireland’s foreign policy but also its domestic policy in the future. The speakers discussed these and other exciting topics related to Irish politics and the Atlantic Connection during the panel discussion.

Invited speakers:

  • Ronan Gargan, Ambassador of Ireland to Hungary
  • Prof Brigid LAFFAN, Director and Professor, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute
  • Moderator: Alessandro D’Onofrio, Senior Researcher, Antall József Knowledge Centre



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