Thursday, 28 November 2019
Department of Finance
Financial Services Sector
The Deputy may be aware that the Government’s Strategy for the development of Ireland's international financial services sector to 2025, 'Ireland for Finance', was launched last April. The vision of the Strategy is for “Ireland to be a top-tier location of choice for specialist international financial services and to enhance and protect our future competitiveness”.
The Ireland for Finance strategy was accompanied by an Action Plan containing over 50 action measures for implementation in 2019 grouped across the four pillars of the Strategy: operating environment; technology and innovation; talent; and communications and promotion. The actions cover sub-sectors such as banking, investment funds, investment management, insurance, fintech, payments, and aviation leasing.
As part of the governance structures of the Ireland for Finance strategy, the public sector High-Level Implementation Committee, which is chaired by Minister of State for Financial Services and Insurance, Michael D'Arcy TD, will report to Government every six months on the progress of the annual Action Plans. The first Progress Report under Ireland for Finance covering progress on Q2 & Q3 2019 will go to Government soon and it will be published on relevant Government websites shortly afterwards.
One of the key measures for 2019 was the introduction of legislation to update the Investment Limited Partnership vehicle in the asset management sector to support the development of the growth finance and funds industry in Ireland. This legislation was published in recent months and proceeds through the Oireachtas. Other headline actions in 2019 included the consideration of a stakeholder engagement bodies; and the establishment of a Fintech Foresight Group (the latter is led by industry representative bodies).
The Department of Finance supports the Minister of State in the delivery of the strategy. The Department and the Minister are currently developing Action Plan 2020 under Ireland for Finance by engaging with relevant government departments, agencies, stakeholders and the industry representative bodies for proposals for inclusion in Action Plan 2020. This will cover developments across the overall IFS sector, including asset management and funds. In terms of asset management and funds, it should be noted that Ireland is the 3rd largest global investment funds domicile. In addition, the country has over €4 trillion in fund assets under administration with the largest European domicile for ETFs and a leading location worldwide for hedge fund administration.
Financial services legislation is constantly being updated and amended, including legislation specific to various sectors within the international financial services industry, as well as the transposition of EU Directives and Regulations.
A draft version of Action Plan 2020 will shortly be presented to Ministers D’Arcy and Donohoe and, once cleared by them, it will be submitted to the quarterly Joint Committee meeting (consisting of the public sector High-Level Implementation Committee and Industry Advisory Committee, made up of senior level representatives of Irish and international IFS companies) next month.
Following agreement at the Joint Committee meeting, and subject to any agreed amendments, the draft Action Plan 2020 will be brought to a Cabinet meeting in January 2020 for agreement by the Government. If the Government agrees to publish the draft Action Plan 2020, it will be launched at the 5th European Financial Forum (EFF) in Dublin Castle next February.
90. To ask the Minister for Finance the number of persons who work in the funds, asset management and international financial services industries by region; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49677/19]
'Ireland for Finance', the Government’s Strategy for the development of Ireland's international financial services sector to 2025 was launched in April of this year. The development of the regions is one of the priorities of the Strategy.
There were approximately 44,000 people in direct employment in the IFS sector at the end of 2018 with one-third of these jobs located outside Dublin. The sector has a significant presence in a number of regional locations including Cavan, Clare, Cork, Drogheda, Dundalk, Galway, Kerry, Kilkenny, Letterkenny, Leitrim, Limerick, Sligo, Tipperary, Waterford, Wexford and Wicklow.
A number of international financial services companies have chosen to build centres of excellence in these regional locations, taking advantage of the opportunity afforded by the higher staff retention rates associated with operations outside of Dublin. Close connectivity to educational institutions and the development of like-minded business lines in a particular regional hub are also important factors why companies locate in these areas.
The two Enterprise Agencies (IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland) actively promote the advantage of regional locations to both existing and target clients. IDA Ireland has an active ‘second site’ strategy where companies in Dublin are encouraged and supported to establish a second office in a regional location.
Groups such as State Street in Kilkenny, Northern Trust in Limerick, MetLife in Galway and First Data in Nenagh have successfully established a regional presence through this channel.
Other public sector bodies that are identified in Ireland for Finance as supporting the Enterprise Agencies include my Department and the nine Regional Skills Fora. At an upcoming meeting, IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland will provide an update on employment figures for Q4 of 2019 to the public sector High Level Implementation Committee, which is chaired by Minister of State Michael D’Arcy TD.
However, significant announcements during the year have included the opening of Fundrock’s regional second site in Limerick, where it intends to employ 45 people; Rimes’ decision to establish its first office in Cork; and Japanese company JRI America Inc.’s announcement to further expand its Technology Centre in Tralee, Co. Kerry, creating 100 new jobs over 5 years.
Carne Global, an Irish founded global provider of fund management company solutions to the asset management industry, announced a significant expansion in its Irish operations earlier this year, creating an additional 250 regional jobs over the next three years in the South East.
Opus Fund Services recently announced its decision to establish a regional second site in Wexford, creating 100 jobs while Liberty Insurance announced a 120-person expansion of its office in Cavan in addition to the announcement by DMS Governance that it is to create 50 further jobs in Cashel.
The employment target in Ireland for Finance is to reach 50,000 people in direct employment in the sector by 2025.