An Oireachtas committee is to be set up to examine the regulation of international surrogacy, with proposals for new laws to be made to Government in a number of months.
There is currently no regulation around surrogacy in Ireland, with the surrogate mother considered the legal mother of the child in Irish law.
Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly is progressing legislation to provide for assisted human reproduction, which will also set out regulations for surrogacy in Ireland.
At the moment, most surrogacies involve parents entering into commercial arrangements with women outside of the State, often from countries such as Ukraine.
The Government has issued a statement in which it committed to setting up a special joint Oireachtas committee to examine the issue of international surrogacy.
The committee will produce a report within three months, setting out recommendations for surrogacy and international surrogacy, before Ministers decide on the legal amendments that are required.
Families have been campaigning for reforms of surrogacy arrangements in Ireland for years.
The intending mother of the child is currently not entitled to apply for a declaration of parentage under Irish law, even if she provided the egg used in the pregnancy and is the genetic mother of the child.
Minister for Justice Helen McEntee said reform of the area must ensure “the rights, interests and welfare of all persons involved in international surrogacy”.
She said this includes children born through surrogacy, surrogate mothers, parents and intending parents.