Tánaiste recommends ministers' St Patrick's Day trips should continue

Simon Coveney has brought a review of the trips to Cabinet

Tánaiste recommends ministers' St Patrick's Day trips should continue

Leo Varadkar and Donald Trump. Picture by: Niall Carson/PA Wire/PA Images

The Tánaiste has brought a review of the Government's international trips for St Patrick's Day to Cabinet.

It says the publicity gained from the trips is unmatched by any other country's national day and is essential for securing Ireland's Brexit priorities.

Six million people attended St Patrick's Day parades around the world, while 29 ministers visited 92 cities in 38 countries as part of their overseas visits.

There were 131 'high-level political meetings' - those involving prime ministers, presidents and senior government ministers - while interviews were held with 1,000 journalists.

A total of 1,302 official events took place, marking an 86% increase on 2017.

The Government estimates the publicity from the trips was worth about €10 million.

304 landmarks around the world were turned green for St Patrick's Day.

Criticism has previously highlighted the cost of sending dozens of officials abroad.

The Tánaiste Simon Coveney, however, is recommending the trips should continue.