Published on Tuesday 6th March 2012

Taoiseach to meet President Obama in White House

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 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 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.

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 which 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.

The Taoiseach will participate in the Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade and meet Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel. He will visit the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, home of the “Fighting Irish”, where he will address faculty and students. On the 19th March, which has been designated as “Ireland Day” at the New York Stock Exchange, he will meet business leaders in New York.

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.

Read the full text of the press release here.

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