The Minister for Social Protection has signalled a referendum on the European Treaty will be held before the summer, saying there are "two windows" in which to hold the vote.
Joan Burton was speaking in New York, where she's continuing her Saint Patrick's Day schedule for Ireland Day on the Stock Exchange.
She signaled that a referendum in the summer rather than the autumn is now the choice of the Government.
While no formal decision has been taken, she said the coalition was coming down on what she called two windows in either late May to early June or late June to early July.
She said it was in Ireland's interest to see stability in the eurozone. She added that American businesses were interested in doing business in Europe, and would see an Irish vote in favour of the treaty as a positive development.