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British-Irish Council Summit ‘helpful’ 30 September 2008

The Isle of Man Government’s attendance at the latest British-Irish Council Summit in Edinburgh was ‘helpful’ in providing information on a range of issues including the global financial situation, according to Chief Minister Tony Brown MHK.

The Chief Minister and DHSS Minister Eddie Teare MHK represented the Island at the Summit, the eleventh since the BIC was established in 1998 as a forum for discussion and co-operation in areas of mutual interest to its members. They joined government leaders from the UK, Irish Republic, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Jersey and Guernsey.

The Chief Minister commented:

‘The Summit was constructive and informative, and it was particularly helpful to get the perspectives of the other countries on the world financial situation. For example, the Irish Taoiseach had just returned from a meeting of the United Nations that had discussed this issue, and was able to give us an insight into current thinking.’

He added:

‘The Isle of Man benefits from being an active member of the British-Irish Council in a number of ways. It provides us with information on issues that have potential implications for the Island, and it is a forum in which the Isle of Man is recognised at the highest level as one of the nations of the British Isles.’

In examining its long-tem future, the BIC is considering whether to have a permanent location for its secretariat. The Chief Minister said the Isle of Man had expressed an interest, along with other members, in hosting this.

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