Taoiseach dismisses calls for a quick exit of the UK from the EU

Enda Kenny says Ireland is ready for the challenges ahead

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The Taoiseach Enda Kenny is putting Ireland on a collision course with some of the larger EU member states, saying there will not be a speedy exit by the UK.

Mr Kenny says Ireland is ready for the challenges ahead from what he called the "political earthquake" of the UK vote to leave the European Union.

He has told the Dáil that he wants a common agreed response across parties, but warned it is not possible to fully implement contingency plans as we still do not know the proposed arrangements for Brexit or the exact timetable.

And the Taoiseach took a swipe at a meeting of the founding members of the EEC over the weekend, where they pushed for a speedy exit by the UK.

The Dáil is sitting to discuss the UK decision to leave the EU, and its implications for Ireland.

Michéal Martin suggested the referendum "poses immediate economic, social and political threats more severe than anything faced in the last seventy years.

"The threats for our country are grave and they require an urgent and comprehensive response," he added.

Labour leader Brendan Howlin said: "There is a terrible irony in the week that the [Battle of the] Somme is remembered that the British people voted themselves out of the one organisation that has contributed most to the most peaceful period in European history."

Sinn Féin's Gerry Adams argued: "Reform of the EU has been necessary for decades now. The outcome of the Brexit referendum should encourage such a process and it should be undertaken with urgency.

“On this island, notwithstanding partition, we should also accept the vote in the north. People voted to remain within the EU. That should be upheld," he said.

The statements came as a Fine Gael MEP warned that any attempt by the EU to raise Ireland's corporate tax rate will result in us leaving the union as well.

Brian Hayes says corporate tax is a red line issue for the government.

The 12.5% rate undercuts other EU countries in seeking foreign direct investment, and Britain had been an ally in fighting tax harmonisation across Europe.

Mark Fielding from ISME says the government must do all it can to protect Irish business interests in the wake of Brexit.

Eugene Kelly of Appian Asset Management says there needs to be greater leadership to steady the markets in the wake of Brexit.