The Taoiseach has indicated that foreign travel and indoor hospitality will be possible by the end of the summer.
Speaking to Pat Kenny on Newstalk, Micheál Martin said that vaccination across Europe made the prospect of foreign travel possible.
“So it’s possible in July, August, that travel will be possible, given the fact that vaccination would have happened all over Europe.”
He said that Ireland will be "full participants in the EU Green Passport scheme which is being drawn up currently and earlier told RTÉ that Ireland "could not disconnect itself forever".
On indoor hospitality, he said that while it constitutes what NPHET would call a "high-risk activity", he hoped it would be possible in July.
“It’s a possibility. I do not want to be nailing my colours to the mast (but) by that time there will be a significant number of vaccinations.”
However, he warned that the "emergency brake" on reopening will depend on hospitalisations and ICU admissions
He toldthat the pressure on the health service and the vaccination programme were the "key factors" in Ireland's phased reopening announced last night.
The Taoiseach said "in the past, we have delayed reopenings" but he was confident that May could be navigated. He said the Government was ready to step in "if trends turn".
He said there are "a number of variables" about how easings are decided.
From May 10, there will be a significant relaxing of restrictions, with the resumption of inter-county travel and click-and-collect shopping, as well as the reopening of hairdressers, barbers, beauticians, garden centres, museums, and libraries.
The Taoiseach said the steps being taken are "low to medium risk".
"It's cautious, it's in line with public advice and it's in line with the sectors we had flagged at the end of March."
Mr Martin said the public had "responded well to the guidance" this year and this was "the key factor" in the speeding up of easing.
He said there is "no guarantees" for any business, but said that those who are due to reopen should prepare as best they can at this stage.
Asked about the Pandemic Unemployment Payment, Mr Martin reiterated there "will be no cliff-edge" to payments and said that yesterday's announcement doubled the payment of the CRSS which assists hospitality businesses.
Mr Martin said uniformity in maternity services "should happen" and the Government is working to make this so.
He said the current rules around weddings were "very tough" and he empathised with people planning theirs. However, he said while he would not be indicating the numbers people getting married in the autumn could invite, the Government "hopes to be more flexible".
Mr Martin said he still had faith in the vaccine rollout but said a new HSE plan on the programme would be seen next week. He said it would be "mayhem" to allow people a choice of which brand of vaccine they wish to take, but said it is possible that "parallel programmes" of age cohorts will begin in the coming weeks.
The Taoiseach added he was optimistic he would "see Jones's Road" as a Cork fan this year.