Irish prime minister Enda Kenny arrived in the U.S. on Thursday for a three-city tour focusing on jobs, trade, and investment.
Kenny’s first stop is Atlanta, where he will address senior business figures at the Irish Chamber of Commerce and at a roundtable event organized by IDA Ireland. According to a press release, he will meet senior leaders of Atlanta-based companies with links to Ireland, including the CEOs of Coca-Cola and Oldcastle, a subsidiary of CRH, which is the largest Irish company in the United States. The Taoiseach will also meet with the Governor of Georgia, Nathan Deal, and the Mayor of Atlanta, Kasim Reed.
He will be the Grand Marshal for the Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day parade, on Saturday, March 14.
Kenny’s next stop will be Austin, where he will officially open Ireland’s new consulate in Texas. He will discuss Ireland’s profile as a global tech hub at South by Southwest, one of the world’s biggest technology events, and will address an Enterprise Ireland event to introduce Irish entrepreneurs to venture capital firms. He will also meet with the Greg Abbott, the new Governor of Texas.
On Monday and Tuesday he will be in Washington, D.C., to meet with President Obama and attend events hosted by Vice President Biden and Speaker Boehner. The press release states that he will meet with several other senior political figures and “will use each of these opportunities to celebrate the strength of Irish-U.S. relations, to highlight Ireland's ongoing economic recovery, and to continue to advocate for immigration reform to assist the many thousands of undocumented Irish in the U.S.”
During his time in D.C., Kenny is scheduled to address the American Ireland Fund and to meet senior business contacts at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He will celebrate Irish research excellence and industry-academic links at an event with Science Foundation Ireland.
Kenny will launch the “Proclaiming Ireland” Program, to take place at the Kennedy Center in 2016, which will form the centerpiece of the 1916 commemorations in the U.S. before leaving Washington on Wednesday to fly to Brussels for the European Council.