The Taoiseach travels to Brussels today to address the European Parliament on the future of Europe.
Bertie Ahern is expected to focus his mid-afternoon speech on the challenges facing the EU and Ireland’s increasing role within the 25-state bloc.
Mr Ahern is also due to hold bilateral talks with European Parliament president Josep Borrell, who is due to address the Forum on Europe in Dublin Castle tomorrow.
Before he departs Brussels, the Taoiseach will have lunch with EU political party leaders and meet with the Irish MEPs.
Speaking ahead of today’s keynote address, Mr Ahern said: “It is a great honour to address the only directly-elected, multi-national legislative body in the world.”
“The significance of the Parliament in today’s Europe was borne out recently by the constructive role it played in ensuring that a compromise was reached on the EU Services Directive.”