Tuesday, 7 July 2009
Dáil Eireann Debate
83. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the economic black spots of unemployment here; if she is working in co-operation with regional groups to stimulate employment; if strategic planning has taken part on her behalf to counteract regional disparities in unemployment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27099/09]
Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (Deputy Dara Calleary): The latest Quarterly National Household Survey published on 25 June, 2009, shows that unemployment in the Border, Midlands and Western region was 11.4%. For the Southern and Eastern region the figure was 9.7%. The figure for the country as a whole was 10.2%.
The Enterprise Development agencies under the aegis of my Department are working closely and with local interests in order to maintain an integrated approach to investment and enterprise development. The strategies and policies being pursued by the State Development agencies will continue to support enterprise development and bring about job creation throughout the country. However, the final decision as to where a particular project will locate rests with the promoter of that project.
Enterprise Ireland delivers a wide range of supports to Irish companies, targeted at the specific requirements of clients throughout all regions to ensure that they develop to their full potential in terms of employment, innovation and exports. This in turn, stimulates job creation. The Enterprise Stabilisation Fund will enable internationally trading companies survive the current global downturn by supporting their drive to reduce costs and gain sales in overseas markets. Sustainable economic recovery will be driven by enterprises focused on increasing their exports of innovative products and services in global markets.
The 35 County and City Enterprise Boards (CEBs) provide support for micro-enterprises in the start-up and expansion phases, promote and develop indigenous micro-enterprise potential and stimulate economic activity and entrepreneurship at local level. The CEBs deliver a series of programmes to underpin this role and they can provide both financial and non-financial assistance to a project promoter. The unemployed can access the services of their local CEB if they are considering setting up their own business.
FÁS is providing in excess of 129,000 training and work experience activation places this year. These places are designed to give the unemployed opportunities to improve their skills levels and increase their employability. Places are allocated throughout the 8 FÁS Regions in consultation with the relevant region. In this process each region will identify its training needs based on regional profiles, which include:
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