Budget 2017 will be prudent and reflective of Ireland's economic recovery, according to Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

Mr Kenny was before the Seanad this afternoon to discuss Brexit, the Programme for Government and the upcoming Budget.

He said while the country had many reasons to be positive about the future, lessons had to be learned from the last decade.

"The gains we have made were hard won and this Government is not going to put them at risk", he said.

The Taoiseach said that given the international environment - Britain choosing to leave the EU and low levels of growth in Europe - such a Budget is necessary.

He said Budget 2017 will prioritise new measures to help make people's lives better and offer better services, particularly for hard-pressed families.

Mr Kenny said work would continue to ensure Ireland is "Brexit ready".

The Taoiseach has also indicated that the Government will provide extra help to entrepreneurs and the self-employed and encourage start up and micro businesses to locate here in the Budget

Meanwhile speaking at the Irish Management Institute Mr Kenny said it would involve taking another step to increase the Earned Income Tax Credit to match the PAYE credit as outlined in the Programme for Government.

It is understood the increase will be around €500.

The Earned Income Tax Credit for the self-employed of up to €550 was introduced in the last budget.

Mr Kenny said of all the countries to be affected by Brexit, Ireland is the most critical.

He pointed out to Senators that Britain's exit from the EU will not affect countries in the southeast of Europe to the same extent. 

Mr Kenny said he does not want a hard border, however, he said there may be different views in Europe. 

He said people voted in 1998 in the North and the South to travel on the island freely. 

Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Public Expenditure and Reform, Dara Calleary, said he had a good meeting today with the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Pashcal Donohoe on the spending package for Budget 2017.

Mr Calleary said they would have further meeting on the measures.

Separately, the Independent Alliance is due to meet Minister for Finance Michael Noonan and Mr Donohoe on their proposals for Budget 2017.

The Alliance will be pushing for a number of measures for rural Ireland and carers.

Minister of State for Disability Finian McGrath is looking for medical cards for 10,000 children on the Domiciliary Care Allowance, which is contained in the Programme for Government.

He is also seeking increased speech therapy services along with more investment in residential and respite places.

In the Dáil today, Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald said farmers' concerns will be considered in the upcoming Budget.

Ms Fitzgerald was responding to Independent TD Michael Collins during Leaders' Questions.

Mr Collins asked if the Government could give farmers the opportunity of paying taxes over five years to ease the burden they are currently facing.

The minister said the Government is determined that the recovery is felt in every part of the country, including among rural communities.