The Government will seek to boost Irish representation in the European Union’s institutions under a new strategy to be announced this week.
Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney sought Cabinet approval for the plan that aims to maintain representation at senior levels in the EU in the coming years.
Ministers were told that Ireland is adequately represented at present and in the past has had disproportionate numbers in senior roles in Brussels.
However, there is now significant under-representation at entry and mid-management levels. The strategy, to be launched ahead of Europe Day on May 9th, will aim to address this.
It is to build on and expand the Department of Foreign Affairs’ EU Jobs campaign in operation since 2011.
The strategy will include tailored support and training for Irish candidates and additional resources supporting the use of Irish as an official EU language.
There is to be a doubling of a scheme for secondment of national experts from 24 to 50 annually as well as an expanded scholarship programme for the College of Europe in Bruges and Natolin, aiming for at least 10 post-graduate students annually.
It will also aim to encourage reform of recruitment processes.