IRELAND: Enda Kenny met with British Prime Minister David Cameron in London today as part of his two-day tour of the UK.
The bilateral meeting gave Mr Kenny and David Cameron the opportunity to review progress across a wide range of areas of collaboration covered in their 2012 Joint Statement.
Topics discussed during the meeting included trade and the North along with a stalled wind energy deal between Ireland and Britain and visa arrangements allowing Asian visitors to travel between the Republic and the UK.
Enda Kenny told the British PM that the visit of Queen Elizabeth to the Republic in 2011 had made a positive and "extraordinary" impact on the relationship between the Republic and its neighbour.
IRISH WORLD HERITAGE CENTRE
The Taoiseach traveled to London from Manchester where he was in attendance yesterday at a civic reception to mark the opening of the first phase of the newly renovated, Irish World Heritage Centre.
While in London the Taoiseach was joined by the Mayor of Castlebar, Noreen Heston. The pair paid a visit to the grave of Castlebar born inventor, Louis Brennan in in St Mary’s Cemetery, Harrow Road, to unveil a newly developed grave and headstone and a commemorative plaque.
Louis Philip Brennan was born on Main Street, Castlebar, Co. Mayo, on 28 January 1852, the tenth child Thomas Brennan, a hardware merchant in the town.
He started his working life as a watchmaker in Australia and went on to become an Irish-Australian mechanical engineer and inventor of Brennan’s torpedo, the world’s first practical guided missile, and the gyroscopic monorail.
Two restaurants and a grocers shop/food distributor were served with enforcement orders by the FSAI in February.
A closure order was served on Mr Humayan Kabir, director of Chandpura Ltd who run the popular Santori Indian restaurant and take-away (formerly Santoor) with an address at Chapel Lane, Mill Race, in the town.
A further enforcement order was served on Mr Jack Chen of the Bei Jing House Restaurant with an address at College Road, Mountbellew.
A grocery and meat products distributor trading as 'Real Brazil' in Gort was also subject to enforcement orders. The two seperate oreders were served on Mr Sean Fahey, manager of Real Brazil with an address of 3 Sliabh Carrow, Ennis Road, Gort. The second enforcement order was served on Mr Anaelson B. Dias with an address at Unit 6, The Grove, Crowe Street, Gort.
Professor Alan Reilly, Chief Executive, FSAI, said that vigilance was required in relation to food safety and that standards must not be permitted to slip. He noted that every closure reported damages the relationship between those in the food industry and potential customers.
"Each Closure Order undermines consumer confidence in food safety which not only affects the food business involved, but the industry as a whole.
“It is not acceptable for any food business to potentially put their customers’ health at risk. Every food business should be striving for the high food safety and hygiene standards that the majority of food businesses are committed to achieving on a daily basis."
The list of enforcement orders for February is below.
Four Closure Orders were served under the FSAI Act, 1998 on:
Six Closure Orders was served under the EC (Official Control of Foodstuffs) Regulations, 2010 on:
One Prohibition Order was served under the FSAI Act, 1998 on:
Three Prohibition Orders were served under the EC (Official Control of Foodstuffs) Regulations, 2010 on:
Prof. Reilly also encouraged members of the public and consumers to use the FSAI if they think that a complaint against a food related business and if they are not happy with the standard of hygiene or food that they’ve bought in a food outlet.
The FSAI advice Line number is 1890 336677 or you can email the FSAI on firstname.lastname@example.org,
"These complaints are followed up and investigated by environmental health officers throughout the country, Reilly added”
Full details of the food businesses served with enforcement orders are published on the FSAI’s website.
RELAND: Social Protection Minister, Joan Burton has again urged employers to play their part in getting people back to work by utilising the Pathways to Work Strategy.
She made the comments today following the release of Live Register figures for February by the Central Statistics Office (CSO).
The CSO figures released earlier today, indicate that unemployment has fallen for the 20th month in a row.
There were 30,807 fewer people on the Live Register last month than in February 2013, and 41,353 fewer than in February the previous year.
Minister Burton acknowledged that the standardised unemployment rate has now fallen to 11.9% from a crisis peak of 15.1%. She said that today’s figures are very encouraging and that the 'Pathways to -Work' strategy was playing a central part in the ongoing progress. However, she stated that the current unemployment rate was not favourable.
"An 11.9% unemployment rate is still far too high, and that is why, this year and beyond, my absolute priority will be to ensure that the Live Register falls substantially further, with full employment the central target."
Pathways reforms include replacing dole offices with new Intreo centres – one-stop shops where jobseekers get their income and employment supports in the one place for the first time.
"We want employers in Ireland to follow the example of their counterparts in countries like Germany and Austria and be willing to give not alone young jobseekers but also long-term unemployed people the necessary work, training and apprenticeship opportunities.
PATHWAYS TO WORK
Pathways to work is the Coalition Government’s 50 point plan to tackle long-term unemployment in Ireland. Some of the main actions of the plan are to give incentives to employers who are able to recruit long-term unemployed, to streamline welfare payments and to increase the number of employment schemes open to people out of work for a long time.
The full strategy is available here
IRELAND: Technology company, VCE, have announced plans to create 150 new jobs in Cork over the next two years.
Jobs Minister, Richard Bruton today announced that the innovative technology company plans to create up to 150 new research and development (R&D) positions at its international headquarters in Ballincollig near Cork City.
The two-year initiative will create employment opportunities for software engineers and developers, quality assurance (QA) engineers and other R&D support roles.
Recruitment is already underway for a number of positions. The new QA and R&D roles will significantly expand VCE’s existing operations in Ireland.
Additional recruiting efforts are underway for all other open roles and VCE expects to employ more than 250 people at its Cork based, international headquarters by 2015.
Minister Bruton met senior executives from VCE on a number of occasions on recent IDA investment missions to the United States.
"I know how dynamic and innovative VCE is from our meetings on recent missions to the United States. Today’s announcement that they are making significant investments and creating 150 jobs is great news for Cork and for Ireland,” the minister said.
"I wish them every success and look forward to working with them on future projects,” he added.
Mr Bruton said that cloud computing was a sector which the Government had targeted as part of their action plan for jobs, and that significant progress had been seen in the sector over the last couple of years.
IRELAND: The Taoiseach and the Tánaiste have said that over 60 percent of items on the Programme for Government have already been achieved or are at an advanced stage.
During today’s speech that marked the Coalition Government’s third year in office the Taoiseach said: “The credit belongs to the Irish people for their sacrifice and patience as we put Ireland on the road to recovery”.
Speaking at the press conference outside Government Buildings, Enda Kenny rejected suggestions that the Government was over-estimating the extent of their good work done so far and stated that ministers will continue with a "relentless focus on job creation”.
He said that as new jobs are created in todays economy, we have to ensure that those who lost jobs and suffered most are not left behind in the recovery.
Tánaiste, Eamon Gilmore added that the Government will make easing fear and pressure on families a top priority this year.
“For too long in our country, people have been living with a fear of the future. Fear for their families’ future. Our focus in 2014 is ensuring that nothing puts recovery at risk, and in making the choices that ensure people can plan for the future again, with hope.”
Fianna Fail (FF) spokesperson on finance, Michael McGrath said that although FF recognised that progress had been made, the Government had a lot more to do to make things better and stem the continuing emigration from the country.
The full text of today’s speech is available at the following link.
My Purple Chair
The My Purple Chair title was born from my favourite place to sit and think about what's happening in the world. It's old but comfortable. So i suppose it's a bit like myself!