The prestigious Young European Leaders event was launched in 2011 to bring together the continent’s most promising talents to contribute to Europe’s leadership through their ability to bring together and inspire people. Each year, a group of some 40 carefully selected European Young Leaders from politics, science, media, technology and other fields in Europe, meet and discuss the current challenges the EU faces today, both for society as a whole, as well as for its citizens.
Discussing the event Minister English stated: “It is great to engage with 40 fellow young Europeans about issues of common concern, and solutions, for both Ireland and for the EU. The group is not just politicians, there are young leaders in business at the highest level, artists, writers and scientists amongst others gathered in Dublin this weekend. The threat of Terrorism, the tragedy of the refugee crisis and the wider issues of handling migration into the EU, and the need to kick start the industrial and innovation motor of Europe’s economy were all debated keenly. It was good to hear other points of views, which is important in finding real workable solutions both within countries and the wider EU” he said.
“Europeans need to start thinking together again if the European Union is going to thrive – or even survive – over the next half century” former Taoiseach John Bruton told the conference
The former Meath T.D., Fine Gael leader and EU Ambassador John Bruton pointed to four major problems for Europe today: aging populations; a reliance on mature technologies; the continent’s reduced relative size in the world; and risk aversion
Both Bruton, and Minister English highlighted the threat of the possibility of the UK leaving the EU after a referendum. “If every country started to do this the EU would not last more than another two years,” Bruton said. His view was shared by local Minister Damien English, who cited Meath’s strategic importance between Dublin and the border counties, as well as Ireland’s potent historic as well as economic ties with the UK.