Kieran McCarthy MLA said: “This was an historic day for the Ards peninsula. It was the first visit of an Irish President to the area, and I hope there will be many more to come in future. I am very pleased at the warm welcome that was extended to her by local people.
“The visit was very significant in that it will have helped strengthen business and cultural links between the Ards peninsula and the Republic of Ireland. Given the current economic climate, greater co-operation is important to bolster our local economy.
“Strengthening good relations is vital too because it sends out a strong message that Northern Ireland is open for business and welcomes everyone. Sinn Fein and the DUP would do well to reflect on this positive event and get back to business to show that Northern Ireland really is moving forward.”