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Donohoe vows to overcome challenges facing EU after winning Eurogroup presidency

The Finance Minister has been elected as president of the group of eurozone finance ministers.

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Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, of Fine Gael, arrives at the Dail, in the Convention Centre, Dublin for the election of the new Taoiseach.

Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, of Fine Gael, arrives at the Dail, in the Convention Centre, Dublin for the election of the new Taoiseach.

Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, of Fine Gael, arrives at the Dail, in the Convention Centre, Dublin for the election of the new Taoiseach.

Paschal Donohoe has pledged to work closely with all members of the Eurogroup to overcome the bloc’s economic challenges as he takes over as president of the group.

Mr Donohoe was elected on Thursday to head the finance group, beating Luxembourg finance minister Pierre Gramegna and Spanish economy minister Nadia Calvino.

The announcement came in a tweet from incumbent Eurogroup President Mario Centeno, which said: “Congratulations to the new Eurogroup President” and contained a photo of Mr Donohoe.

Mr Donohoe, who is currently Ireland’s Finance Minister said he will work with his counterparts to help steer the Eurozone through the deep recession predicted following the pandemic.

At a press conference broadcast following his win, he said: “I am very conscious that as this vote takes place, we do so in the shadows of two different crises, the aftermath of the crisis of the sovereign (debt) and the current challenge and crisis of the pandemic.

“As I begin my tenure as president of the Eurogroup, I am deeply conscious that the citizens of Europe are looking at where their national economies stand and the European economy.

“They have become concerned and fearful about the future of their jobs and their incomes.

“This is a challenge that I understand and members of the Eurogroup understand.

“During my tenure as president, I will be working closely with all members of the Eurogroup to look at how our shared currency can help to respond to these great challenges.

“As great and deep as the challenges are, I am confident that my colleagues in the Eurogroup and in Government have laid the foundations to overcome these challenges and prevail.

“The challenges are great but we will prevail and overcome them.”

Mr Donohoe will start his new role on Monday alongside his current role as Finance Minister.

PA