Written Answers - Job Creation.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 666 No. 3

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  190.  Deputy Enda Kenny  Information on Enda Kenny  Zoom on Enda Kenny   asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment  Information on Mary Coughlan  Zoom on Mary Coughlan   the number of jobs created by the Industrial Development Authority within the Border, midland and western region for each of the past five years; if this equates to 50% of the jobs created by the IDA during that period; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [39352/08]

  191.  Deputy Enda Kenny  Information on Enda Kenny  Zoom on Enda Kenny   asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment  Information on Mary Coughlan  Zoom on Mary Coughlan   if it is the policy of the Government and the Industrial Development Authority to create 50% of all jobs created by the IDA within the Border, midland western region; the proposals for 2008 in this regard; the method by which the IDA intend to fulfil the 50% target; the sectors in which this will be achieved; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [39353/08]

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment (Deputy Mary Coughlan): Information on Mary Coughlan  Zoom on Mary Coughlan  I propose to take Questions Nos. 190 and 191 together.

IDA Ireland is the agency with statutory responsibility for the attraction of foreign direct investment (FDI) to Ireland and its regions. The marketing of individual areas for new or expansion FDI investments and jobs is a day-to-day operational matter for the Agency. While I may give general policy directives to the Agency, I am precluded under the Industrial Development Acts from giving directives regarding individual undertakings or from giving preference to one area over others.

In the period 2003 to 2007, a total of 9,584 new jobs (both Greenfield and expansion) were created by IDA client companies in the BMW Region. The following tabular statement (Table 1) shows the number of jobs created in each of the years in question. For the period 2000 to 2006 IDA Ireland set a high-level performance target for the Objective 1 (BMW) Area, which committed the Agency to work to deliver a target of 50% of all new Greenfield jobs to be located in the Objective 1 Area. Despite difficult global trading conditions, substantial progress was achieved against this target and in that period 36% of all new Greenfield jobs were located in the area. This represents a rolling average calculated over the seven-year period and these are shown for each year in Table 2.

In recent years, Ireland has undergone a transformation from a low wage/low cost economy towards a high value and knowledge-based one. Arising from this transformation, the nature of foreign direct investment (FDI) has changed and Ireland is now competing for premium mobile investments against the most advanced countries in the world. A key aspect of the high value, knowledge intensive FDI, for which Ireland now competes, is that it increasingly favours locations in or near centres of urban scale, where it has access to the concentrations of infrastructure, skills and services it needs.

Accordingly, IDA Ireland has aligned its strategy with the National Spatial Strategy (NSS). In line with the NSS, IDA is focused on delivering investments to the Gateway and Hub locations nationally, and specifically those in the BMW region. This strategy involves matching investor requirements with the competencies, infrastructure and critical mass of the Gateway and Hub locations to secure the maximum number of investment for Ireland. In keeping with this strategy a total of 64% of new investments were located outside Dublin in 2007.

The key sectors of focus for IDA are Life Sciences, Information and Communications Technologies and high value Services activities. In this connection, it must be remembered that, under the revised EU Regional Aid Guidelines, the BMW and South East Regions are the only areas where Regional aid is available up to 2013. Ultimately it is the investor who decided where to locate.

[659]In recent years IDA has supported the development of the BMW Region by substantially increasing the size and remit of its regional offices in the area. Today, over 80 staff are based in its regional offices in Athlone and Sligo.

Delivering regionally based innovative, world class property solutions is a priority for the Agency. A successful example of this approach has been the delivery of an advance planning permission for a Biopharmaceutical facility in Oranmore, Co Galway. This is a truly unique marketing resource and the first of its kind in Ireland.

Despite the difficult economic situation in which we find ourselves, I am satisfied that the policies being pursued by the Government and the work on the ground being carried out by the development agencies will continue to bear fruit in terms job creation and investment for the Region.

Table 1 shows the number of new jobs in IDA client companies in the Objective 1 (BMW) Area in each of the years 2003 to 2007.

YEAR 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Number of New Jobs 2,120 1,890 2,600 1,528 1,446

Table 2 shows Percentage of New Greenfield Jobs Created by IDA* (2000-2006).

2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
BMW 45% 43% 44% 46% 41% 39% 36%
South & East 55% 57% 56% 54% 59% 61% 64%

  192.  Deputy Enda Kenny  Information on Enda Kenny  Zoom on Enda Kenny   asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment  Information on Mary Coughlan  Zoom on Mary Coughlan   the number of Industrial Development Authority jobs created in County Mayo for each of the past five years; the accumulated total as a percentage of IDA jobs created in that five year period; the investment involved; the number of jobs by sector created; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [39355/08]

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment (Deputy Mary Coughlan): Information on Mary Coughlan  Zoom on Mary Coughlan  IDA Ireland is the agency with statutory responsibility for the attraction of foreign direct investment (FDI) to Ireland and its regions. The marketing of individual areas for new or expansion FDI investments and jobs is a day-to-day operational matter for the Agency. While I may give general policy directives to the Agency, I am precluded under the Industrial Development Acts from giving directives regarding individual undertakings or from giving preference to one area over others.

In the past five years a total of 493 new jobs were created in IDA supported companies in County Mayo, which represents 1% of all new jobs created in IDA supported companies in the country in the same period. The following tabular statement sets out the number of new jobs created, by sector, in each of the years in question. In the 5 year period, 2003 to 2007, a total of €5.4m. has been paid in grants to IDA supported companies in County Mayo.

IDA recognises the need to provide high value employment opportunities in the key towns in Mayo that provide sustainable long-term jobs. In line with the National Spatial Strategy (NSS) the linked hub of Castlebar/Ballina and the town of Westport are priority locations for IDA and are being actively promoted for new FDI. IDA is committed to the development of Mayo and is working continuously with the existing client base to deepen the global strategic [660]importance of the Irish operations within their parent corporations. In addition, the Agency is investing significantly in the provision of planned and focused property solutions in the county by developing world class Business and Technology Parks in Ballina, Westport, and Castlebar. This is an essential marketing tool in the process of attracting potential new investors to the county.

At present there are 19 IDA supported companies in Mayo employing almost 3,000 people in permanent jobs and approximately 500 more in temporary and contract employment. I am satisfied that the actions of the development agencies will continue to bear fruit in terms of economic development for the people of the Mayo. Table showing the number of new jobs, by sector, created in County Mayo in each of the years 2003 to 2007.

NACE Sector 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Food products beverages and tobacco 4 0 14 14 6
Textiles and textile products 0 0 0 0 0
Clothing, footwear and leather 0 0 0 0 0
Pulp paper and paper products; publishing and printing 8 0 0 0 0
Chemicals chemical products and man-made fibres 22 23 15 0 86
Rubber and plastic products 5 0 0 7 0
Other non-metallic mineral products 0 0 0 0 0
Basic and fabricated metal products 0 1 5 2 3
Machinery and equipment n.e.c. 0 0 0 0 2
Electrical and optical equipment 49 34 48 4 3
Transport equipment 0 2 2 0 0
Other manufacturing n.e.c. 0 0 0 0 0
International Services 21 85 4 10 14
Financial Services 0 0 0 0 0
ALL SECTORS 109 145 88 37 114


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