Over 60% of people say the EU is more important to Ireland than the UK

If a referendum were held in Ireland, 80% say they would vote remain

IBEC, Brexit, Ireland, benefits, upside, currency, trade, EU, referendum, Danny McCoy

The British Union Jack flies alongside the Irish Tricolour in front of Government Buildings. Image: RollingNews.ie

A new poll on Irish attitudes towards a British exit of the European Union shows a majority here feel Europe is more important to Ireland than the UK.

The first national poll of Irish sentiment post-Brexit vote also shows most believe an exit will negatively impact on the economy.

The poll finds that 56% said it will have a negative effect, 30% believe Brexit is an opportunity for Ireland, with 45% seeing it as a threat.

When asked who is more important to Ireland, 62% said Europe, 25% UK, with 13% undecided.

While an overwhelming majority - 86% - are against border controls between the north and south.

Some 36% said they are more likely to shop across the border or in the UK, and 60% say it makes no difference to their shopping habits.

Source: PR360/Amárach Research

And 33% believe a UK exit from the EU makes a united Ireland more likely - 14% say it is less likely, with 39% saying it makes no difference.

Irish attitudes towards Europe were positive, with 77% seeing Ireland's membership of the EU as a good thing.

If a referendum on EU membership were held in Ireland, 80% would vote remain, 13% leave with 7% undecided.

Similar to the UK, there is a notable difference in attitudes between younger and older people - with 18-24 year olds more pro-European than those over-55.

The poll was commissioned by public relations firm PR360, and was undertaken on Wednesday this week by Amárach Research.

It measured Brexit sentiment among a representative sample of 1,000 people living in Ireland.