This report highlights the significant progress made over the past six months in implementing the Stormont House (SH) and Fresh Start (FS) Agreements. The report highlights progress on a range of issues including:
- Implementation welfare reform legislation in Westminster
- Royal Assent for the Northern Ireland (Stormont Agreement and Implementation Plan) Act
- Funding for shared and integrated education projects in Northern Ireland
- Publication of a report from an independent panel on tackling paramilitary activity in local communities; and
- The restructuring of the Northern Ireland Civil Service
The progress report was presented at the quarterly meeting to review the implementation of the SH and FS Agreements held in Belfast on 29 June involving the UK Government, Irish Government and the Northern Ireland Executive.
The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP, led for the UK Government. The Irish Government was represented by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charles Flanagan. They were joined by Northern Ireland Executive First Minister Arlene Foster, deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness and Northern Ireland Justice Minister Justice Claire Sugden.
The meeting was held in accordance with the review and monitoring arrangements set out in the Stormont House Agreement, in line with the well-established three-stranded approach to Northern Ireland affairs.
The implications for Northern Ireland of last week’s vote by people in the UK to leave the EU were also covered, with agreement that it would be vital to work closely together in the weeks and months ahead to ensure Northern Ireland’s best interests are represented and upheld.