A former Cathaoirleach of Longford County Council says all Ministers should travel abroad for St. Patrick's Day.
It comes following concerns from the Irish SME association that the Government intends to pull back on the number of politicians attending celebrations this year.
However, Councillor Seamus Butler believes the traditional visits are vital for good trade relations particularly for the food and pharmaceutical sectors.
He hopes the Taoiseach will empty the bench and show that Ireland is back open for business.
Speaking on the Joe Finnegan Show the former ISME chair believes it's an opportunity that should be taken for the benefit of the country.