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The Irish government will lay out its Brexit negotiation objectives ahead of a summit of EU leaders next month as the bloc begins to shape its response to the UK’s withdrawal.

Ireland will be the member state most exposed to the economic effects of the UK’s withdrawal from the single market and the customs union due to its strong trade links with Britain.

In a statement responding to the formal start of talks, the government said it would issue a “consolidated paper providing more detail about our priorities and our approach to the negotiations ahead”.

The paper will be published ahead of the first formal summit of 27 leaders in late April. Senior EU officials have stressed the unity of the remaining member states as they enter talks, but the priorities of the Irish government are likely to be a key consideration for Brussels and the UK.

The Irish government has already said it wants to retain its open border and common travel area with Northern Ireland.

Ireland would “negotiate from a position of strength as an integral part of the EU 27 team, and will work with all our partners to achieve the best possible outcome”, the government said.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2017. All rights reserved.

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