Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar is set to provide Irish parents with two weeks paid parental leave every year.
The Irish Daily Mail reports that the Minister will include the proposal in his department's Budget 2018 submission.
Currently, parents can take up to a total of eighteen weeks parental leave for each child. This must be taken before the child's eighth birthday.
However, it is unpaid.
The new proposal would mean that mothers and fathers would be able to take an extra paid fortnight off from work each year. The level of pay would be 'similar to the payment given to those in receipt of maternity and paternity benefit’.
The current rate is €235 per week for both mothers and fathers, who recently received two weeks paid paternity entitlement within the first twenty-six weeks of their child's birth.
It is reported that if every eligible parent were to avail of the extra leave then it would cost the state around €30 million each year.