Thursday, 12 October 2017
Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation
Foreign Direct Investment
38. To ask the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the extent to which she and her Department continue to promote Ireland as an attractive location for foreign direct investment with particular reference to the ability to compete effectively with all other countries in the EU and outside; the locations the greatest competition is likely to come from; if particular advantages and disadvantages have been identified from an Irish perspective; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [43137/17]
Competition for foreign direct investment (FDI) remains intense. Ireland nevertheless attracts global FDI that helps to fuel employment creation and economic growth across the country. Multinational companies continue to invest and re-invest here with leading global firms from many sectors - including life sciences, ICT, engineering and digital media - all based in Ireland. The contribution that these investments make to our wider economy remains highly significant.
Ireland has many strengths when it comes to attracting FDI. This includes, for example, our international competiveness ranking, where we are rated as the 6th most competitive country by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). Ireland also scores very highly in terms of key criteria for FDI including investment incentives, labour productivity and the adaptability and retention of talent. As recognised by the IMD, many of Ireland’s traditional assets including our education system, highly skilled workforce and pro-enterprise business environment add to our competitive advantage and are extremely attractive to inward investors.
While the Government is proud of the country's proven track record in attracting and sustaining FDI, we are very much aware that continued success cannot be taken for granted. That is why we are continually examining how we can improve on factors that are crucial to fostering further investment here, including our cost base, infrastructure, the availability of talent and our legal and regulatory environment.
Ireland continues to compete with many different jurisdictions - both in the EU and further afield - for FDI. We remain confident, however, that Ireland's strengths make us attractive to overseas companies. Our continued membership of the European Union and Eurozone have become particularly important in this context recently.
More generally, the State has a long track record of winning overseas investment for the Irish people. Over that period, the world economy has changed shape many times, yet Ireland has remained an attractive destination for FDI. Our capacity to continue winning such new investment, despite geopolitical changes and intense competition, will be aided by the underlying strengths of our FDI offering. As the global investment climate continues to evolve, we will adapt accordingly – as we have done in the past – and make sure that Ireland continues to secure new FDI projects and the jobs that go with them.