For Written Answer on : 05/07/2023
Question Number(s): 51 Question Reference(s): 33124/23
Department: Foreign Affairs
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs his plans to establish a full-time Consulate General of Ireland in Montreal, Canada; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Ireland and Canada have a close relationship based on shared history and common values. There is a significant Irish diaspora in Canada and many Irish people travel to Canada each year to travel, live and work.
The Embassy of Ireland in Ottawa manages Ireland’s relations with Canada, supported by two Consulates General, in Vancouver and Toronto. Both Consulates General were opened in recent years, in 2018 and 2022 respectively. Given this significant recent investment in Ireland’s diplomatic representation in Canada, part of the Global Ireland 2023 strategy, there is no current plan to open a third full-time Consulate General there, in Montreal or elsewhere.
In Canada, Honorary Consuls of Ireland in place in Edmonton, Calgary, Halifax, and St. John’s. There is currently a process ongoing to appoint an Honorary Consul to the Province of Québec, who would cover the city of Montreal.
Montreal receives a steady number high level visits and engagement, including by Ministers and the Irish Ambassador to Canada. Minister of State for the Diaspora, Sean Fleming TD, will visit Canada later this month and his programme will include elements in Montreal.
Since the launch of the Government’s Global Ireland strategy in June 2018, 22 new diplomatic missions have been opened or announced, including as stated previously the recently opened Consulates General in Vancouver and Toronto. Global Ireland aims to see Ireland’s global footprint and influence double in the period to 2025, including through an expanded and strengthened diplomatic presence.
The Government is conscious of the factors that might warrant the opening of new missions in a number of countries and keeps the matter under active review. In determining further expansion of Ireland’s diplomatic network, including a possible future Consulate General in Montreal, factors including Ireland’s national, political, economic and trade priorities, as well as the availability of resources, will be among the important factors under consideration.