Minister for the Diaspora and International Development, Ciaran Cannon, has welcomed the guarantee that there will be no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic and said it will be especially welcomed by Irish people across the UK.
Minister Cannon said: “Economically, this news from the Brexit negotiations means that there could be no better beginning to the Christmas season for Ireland.
“I welcome the news that the Good Friday Agreement in all its parts is protected and that the Common Travel Area will continue allowing us to travel freely between Britain and Ireland.
“British and Irish citizens will continue to have the freedom to live, work, study, access housing, healthcare, pensions and welfare in each others’ countries as though we are citizens of both.
“In my visits to the United Kingdom I have had the opportunity to listen to the views of our Diaspora and retention of the Common Travel Area, along with the avoidance of a hard border, have been among the most acute concerns expressed.
“Aside from avoiding the paying of tariffs on imports and exports with our biggest single trading partner, the avoidance of a hard border ensures that we can continue to cultivate good relations with our nearest neighbours.
“The numerous family relations between Ireland and the UK are tightly bound and the Irish Diaspora across the UK have followed the progress of these negotiations issue closely. I know that they will applaud these results.”