Dáil Éireann - Volume 666 - 05 November, 2008
Written Answers. - US Visa Programme.
Deputy Noel J. Coonan Deputy Noel J. Coonan
Deputy Noel J. Coonan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the steps he is taking to implement the new J visa system; and when it will be finalised for Irish citizens. [38481/08]
Deputy Micheál Martin Deputy Micheál Martin
Deputy Micheál Martin: As the Deputy will be aware, the United States Deputy Secretary of State, John Negroponte, and I signed a Memorandum of Understanding establishing a new Working Holiday Programme between our two countries in Washington on 24 September.
This Agreement represents a very significant and positive development in our migration arrangements with the United States and will help foster the growth of new and lasting contacts between young people from both countries. In a very real way it represents an important investment in the long term health of this vital bilateral relationship.
Since the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, my Department, in consultation with the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform and the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Employment, has moved quickly to finalise arrangements for US citizens interested in working and travelling in Ireland. A comprehensive step by step guide and application form for US applicants has been prepared and distributed to our Missions in the United States. However, we do not propose to accept applications from US citizens until arrangements for Irish citizens are finalised by the US Administration.
The US State Department has informed our Embassy in Washington that it is actively working to finalise these arrangements. Our Ambassador in Washington also remains in close contact with the US Administration to help ensure that the Programme is fully operational at the earliest possible date.
Question No. 136 answered with Question No. 116.
Dáil Éireann 666 Written Answers. US Visa Programme.