Ministers Michael Creed and Charlie Flanagan
Minister Michael Creed highlighed the importance of agriculture to the econonmy at the outset of his address to the Laois IFA meeting.
“It is the biggest indigenuous industry. It employs 175,000 people inside and outside the farmgate.
“It's ambition is to increase our level of exports and employment significantly from our current level of exports of €13.5 billion in 2013 to €19 billion in 2025.
“This sees additional employment opportunities of 23,000 jobs in rural communities.
“Ninety per cent of what we produce. we export. Forty per cent of our exprots are to the UK.
“We are one of the most globalised economies in the world,” he noted.