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EU Matters.ie - Information about Ireland's membership of the EU

Ireland and the EU

This section explores how Ireland is working with our partners in the EU to make progress on economic and social issues of great importance to Irish people such as farming, the environment and jobs.

The Economy

Ireland is a small, open economy. Of the 27 EU member states we are 7th lowest in terms of population. That means that exports are vital to our economic...

Northern Ireland Peace Process

The European Union has played a key role in the search for peace, reconciliation and prosperity in Northern Ireland and the border counties of Irelan...

Environment & Climate Change

Thanks to the EU, Ireland has some of the highest environment standards in the world. The main priorities include combating climate change, reducing...


When Ireland joined the EEC (as it was in 1973), we were an agricultural economy, and the vast bulk of our exports went to the UK. We had little or no...


The Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) is the European Union's instrument for the management of fisheries and aquaculture.


EU membership has provided significant benefits to Ireland in the fight against crime.


The EU has always been committed to Education. Ireland’s membership of the European Union has given Irish people unprecedented opportunities to study...

Equal Pay

Irish women have benefited greatly from Irish membership of the EU, particularly women in the workplace.

Freedom of Movement

The single market of the European Union is based on the four freedoms – freedom of movement of goods, services, capital and workers. These four freedoms...

Irish Language

Irish became an official and working language of the European Union on 1 January 2007.


Sport is important to Europeans – for many of us it’s the most important thing in our lives - two thirds of all big sports events take place...

Consumer & Health Issues

The EU helps the consumer by advising on rights and allowing easy compensation. The European Health Insurance Card is of great help to citizens who fall...

European Year of Volunteering 2011

2011 has been designated the European Year of Volunteering, providing an opportunity for the thousands of volunteers in Ireland to promote and showcase...