Talks were held at Dublin Castle today ahead of Ireland's presidency of the European Union next year.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore met with the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz.

They also met with a number of other European political leaders.

Mr Schulz said Ireland's presidency comes at a crucial time for Europe, but he is confident Ireland will meet the challenges.

Mr Kenny said while there were clearly differences between member states, he was hopeful a deal would be reached on the EU budget during Ireland's presidency.