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News update from Seán Kelly MEP, Leader of the Fine Gael Delegation in the European Parliament.
                                                           A  Chara,
   Welcome to my July/August 2017 newsletter! I hope everyone had a great summer. I  have been very busy over the past number of weeks attending a lot of exciting events and meetings in Ireland. Working for my constituents in Brussels is one of the most rewarding experiences I've had. However, meeting them in Ireland and discissing my work is equally important so I am always delighted to spend more time at home. In this newsletter, I have included pictures and articles detailing my work in my constituency during the summer.

 I am continuing to work on a wide range of issues on your behalf and if I can be of any assistance to you at any time, please do not hesitate to contact me.

                                                      Is mise le meas,
                                                         Seán Kelly
 (Top Left) I had a great time at the Glenflesk GAA club wheelbarrow race in August!! It’s not often that I get to go head-to-head against my fellow politicians in a wheelbarrow! This was a part of GlenFest, a celebration to mark 40 years of the Glenflesk pitch and to celebrate the launch of the new pitch. Pictured at the Glenflesk Wheelbarrow Race are (L-R) Deputy Micheal Healy-Rae, James Furlong, Derry Healy (Club Chairperson), Deputy John Brassil, Michelle Morris, Deputy Danny Healy-Rae, Marie O’Connor, Peggy Horan and Danielle Favier.

(Top Right) With Dr. Tom Mc Cormack, Fr. Maurice Brick, Sinead Cotter at a fundraiser for Kerry General Hospital at the Tralee Greyhound Track

(Bottom Right) With Australians in Thurles

(Bottom Left)  How times flies: Kevin and Laura Keary's Wedding. Kevin was my assistant from my first term in Brussels. 
He now works for Commissioner Hogan and is married to a wonderful Mayo woman, Laura. I wish them both the best of luck in their new married life!


                    The Kerry Social Farming Project

The Kerry Social Farming Project was launched in July. Its main aim is to give adults with disabilities the opportunity to engage with farm families, to facilitate social inclusion and provide opportunities in rural communities. This summer the Project won the overall prize at the Kerry Community Awards 2017, showcasing the great initiatives taking place within the local communities in our constituency.

                             The Kerry App Walk

In July a walk between Lord Brandon’s cottage and the Bride Valley in Kerry by the Kerry Folklore Group launched the new Kerry App. This new app provides users with information on the heritage and archaeological sites along the walk.  I was there with the German Ambassador Herr Matthias Hopfner and his wife, Tina, Minister Brendan Griffin, the football legend Mikey Ned O’Sullivan, along with many more. It was a thoroughly enjoyable occasion and I am certain this will be a great asset to the Kerry Way.
On the 11th August the Bantry Bay Port Company officially opened the new Bantry Harbour Marina. To celebrate the opening, the Bantry Regatta and BBQ took place over the weekend. A great event and a fantastic asset to the local community.
Turning sod at  St. Michael’s College Listowel
(L-R) Vice Princpal & Kerry 1997 All Ireland Captain Liam Hasset, Br. Griffin & John Brassil TD
I opened my new consituency office in Clonmel Co. Tipperary a few months ago. I'm delighted that this year Fine Gael held its two day Special Parliamentary Party Meeting on the 14th and 15th of September in Clonmel, Co. Tipperary. Attendees saw the very best of South Tipp, with the meeting taking place in the Hotel Minella, right between the Suir and the Comeraghs. This is a big boost for Fine Gael in Tipperary, and I was honoured to welcome members of the Fine Gael Parliamentary Party to Clonmel, and indeed to the Ireland South constituency.

                        British business must be more vocal

This summer I started using the hashtag #ExitFromBrexit, to urge more British businesses to come out against Brexit and call for a stop to what will be a “lose-lose” situation for all. I believe that the British business community must come together and be more vocal on this issue. I praise the example set by the business community in both the Republic of Ireland and in Northern Ireland, who have taken a stand on the issue.

I firmly believe that #ExitfromBrexit is the only sensible solution. However, I have worked tirelessly over the last few months to ensure that Irish voices are heard in the negotiations and I will continue to do so.
Read More Here

                      The Master of Tradition in Bantry 

This summer I also attended the Masters of Trad in Bantry,  celebrating our traditional music.
Clockwise from top:
With legendary folk singer Christy Moore
With the brilliant Martin Hayes
With Mary Hegarty Fine Gael Councillor

                Halawa Acquitted, but breach of human rights

Yesterday I was delighted to hear that Ibrahim Halawa has been aquitted of all charges.  I am pleased that we have finally received a verdict and that this awful time has come to an end for Ibrahim and his family. Between constant postponements and the use of the mass trial format, Ibrahim has been denied his basic human rights over the past four years. In August I criticised the postponement of the trial of the imprisoned Irishman. I was the first MEP to raise this issue in Parliament almost four years ago and I could have never imagined then that it would be September 2017 until we would see a verdict. Tribute must be paid to the diplomatic efforts of the Irish goverment for this case. 
Read More Here

                  Visit to the Parliament

In July a group of secondary school students from Cork and Limerick, who attend Charleville CBS, Co. Cork, presented their plan to Members of the European Parliament and policymakers in Brussels on how to reduce Europe's “carbon cup print”. Conor Buckley, Eamonn O'Sullivan and Conor O'Brien from Co. Cork, and Luke Moore and Aidan Donegan from Co. Limerick outlined their plan to reduce our carbon cup print or the reusable cup waste, and therefore reduce deforestation, landfill, water waste and CO2 emissions. As an Ambassador to the school and as lead negotiator for the EPP group in the European Parliament on the Renewable Energy Directive,  I am delighted to support projects like these and I would hope to see more in the future.
Read More Here
A great summer for GAA
Clockwise from top:
Wexford and Waterford match in the phenomenal new Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork. The newly refurbished stadium is a fantastic credit to all involved and it is a great asset to both the city of Cork and Cork GAA.

Meeting with my local GAA Club Kilcummin
With Senior and U21 star Cian Lynch are their U21 Munster Final Win
Participating in a panel  for RTÉ's Week in Politics during a Strasbourg plenary session with my fellow MEPs Luke 'Ming' Flanagan and Marian Harkin. Follow the programme on RTÉ One live every Sunday at 12 noon to see the issues MEPs work on in the European Parliament for our constituents.
               Ireland to benefit from EU-Japan trade deal
I believe that Ireland can reap the economic benefits from the EU-Japan trade deal, especially in terms of agri-export.  The EU and Japan have formally agreed on an outline of a trade deal, just as Ireland celebrates 60 years of diplomatic relations with Japan. Japan is Ireland’s 11th most important trading partner and a country that is keen on importing more EU agricultural products, particularly dairy goods.The EU-Japan FTA deal is good news for Ireland, especially with concerns for the trading impact of Brexit – new markets are vital. More trade equals more jobs for Ireland. 
Read More Here
Clockwise from top:
Speaking with the Irish Research Council in the European Parliament
Meeting the Horseracing Federation of Ireland

European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018

2018 will be the European Year of Cultural Heritage. It will be an important opportunity to highlight the role of Europe's cultural heritage in fostering a shared sense of history and identity. Events will take place at an European, national, regional, and local level. I warmly welcome this initiative as I believe that it is important to celebrate, understand and protect the unique value of our cultural heritage.
Read More Here

                   The Tullamore Show 13th August

 The Tullamore show took place on the 13th of August. There I met great people, including the President of Macra, James Healy and the Queen of Ploughing Anna May McHugh. It was a brillant family day out with something for everyone!

                     The Kerry Food Hub, Firies

The Kerry Food Hub Firies opened in March 2017 employing sixteen people locally. In July the Firies Community Enterprise Development Ltd won the Community Vibrancy Recognition Programme award, recognising the wonderful achievement of the Kerry Food Hub, Firies.

Whiskey and Spirits to get enhanced geographical protection labelling

Alcoholic spirit drinks are to benefit from enhanced protection under labelling and geographical indications to protect such drinks that originate in certain countries and regions in Europe. This July I co-authored an Opinion on a review of the proposed new law on behalf of the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee. I would also like to proudly note that Irish spirits industry export 95 percent of its produce to over 80 international markets with Ireland being the 8th largest spirit producer in Europe, with approximately half a billion euro added to the Irish economy per year.

Read More Here
On the 25th of July I visited a Biomarin Event in Shanbally Ringaskiddy Cork,  attended by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade with responsibility for Brexit, Simon Coveney, and Chairman and CEO of Biomarin, Jean-Jacques Bienaimé
Tech and Innovation
Robust cybersecurity needed to counter attacks
This August I warned that we need a robust common EU cybersecurity strategy to be able to repel any cyber-attacks against our energy supplies, aviation sector, commercial sectors, and governments. I call again for Ireland to become Europe’s cyber defence hub. Ireland is known for being a high-tech country with a skilled workforce, and is already home to the world’s biggest tech companies, so it could quickly develop more cyber security services and become the global leader in securing information online.
       Half a million tech jobs vacancies by 2020
Over half a million job vacancies for coders, engineers, and other tech specialists are expected within the EU by 2020, according to the European Commission’s latest assessment. Evidently, there is a large gap between qualifications and labour market needs, particularly with regard to specialists. I believe that’s something we must be sure to continue to improve for the next generation.

              Worst Apps for Cyberbullying
A survey released by UK anti-bullying charity Ditch the Label in August highlighted the prevalence of online bullying on social networks. Socialising online is a fact of daily life nowadays, so we must teach and empower children about how to behave online, to report any form of abuse and to seek help whenever they need it. Vigilance is needed and I urge people to be mindful of the dangers, and to support any victims of cyberbullying.
Read More Here

                        The Iverk Show, Kilkenny, 26th August

Founded in 1826 the Iverk Show is the longest running Agriculture Show in Ireland. Below are a selection of photos from my day at the show. It is always fantastic to meet the constituents and catch up. A great day out was had by all!
Clockwise from top:
With the leader of Fine Gael and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar
With Glanbia
Being interviewed by KCLR at the Iverk Show
With Gain Feeds
With Conaghy GAA members
With the Mayor of Cork Councillor Declan Hurley in the European Parliament
Double graduation!! With my daughter Julie on her graduation day from the University of Limerick.

                         PMTC Knowledge Day

On the 31st of August I attended the 3rd annual Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Technology Centre (PMTC) Knowledge Day, hosted by the Kemmy Business School in the University of Limerick. This event brings industry, academic and governmental partners together.  It provides a showcase of the current research and allows industry members to share their vision of the future for the pharmaceutical sector.
With good friend and former Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh at the Planet Woman Academy, which took place during the Rose of Tralee Festival. Planet Woman Academy is pioneered by Norah Casey who interviewed a brilliant line up of women to uncover what sets them apart and how they achieved success.
I certainly had a busy summer! Now that it is September it's back to the  European Parliament where I continue to work on behalf of the people of Ireland South. If you have any enquiries please do not hesitate to contact me.

Slán agus Beannacht, 
Seán Kelly

Copyright © *2017* *Sean Kelly MEP*, All rights reserved.

Do not hesitate to contact me:

Brussels Office:
ASP 08F349,
European Parliament,
Rue Wiertz 60, 1047,
Brussels, Belgium

Constituency Office:
43a Upper Gladstone Street,
Co. Tipperary

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Seán Kelly MEP, European Parliament · 4 Harbour House, Locke Quay · Dublin Road · Limerick, · Ireland