Thursday, 7 February 2019
An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business
I have a question for the Leader. There is a one billion plus company called HID Global which has a base in Inverin in Connemara with more than 100 employees. It announced yesterday that it is moving to the far side of Galway city. As the Minister knows, 100 jobs in rural Ireland are critically important. This is a big hit to the Cois Fharraige area. The vast majority of those employees are native Irish speakers and we have a plean Gaeilge asking people to speak Irish more frequently. I have repeatedly stood up in this House to say not to ask people to speak more Irish but instead give them a chance to work in their locality. It is about jobs. More Irish is being spoken in Dorchester Avenue in Boston than there is in Lettermore or Carraroe. HID Global is a world leader in IT technology. I do not know why it is moving into Galway city. There is a huge unemployment rate in rural Ireland and in the Cois Fharraige area. Was there an offer from the IDA for the company to move to Galway city?
I am a huge supporter of Údarás na Gaeltachta. It works tirelessly to try to get, and to keep, employment in the Gaeltacht regions of rural Ireland. It is a dangerous precedent that a company is moving from an Údarás area in rural Ireland to the far side of Galway city. I ask the Leader to ask the Minister of State, Deputy Kyne, to come to the House to make a statement and to debate this. I am pleading with the Government not to let rural Ireland die because it is dying. We are all on the one team. We need to support businesses and employment in rural Ireland. The last thing we want is to lose a substantial company like this one to the east side of Galway city.