Written answers

Thursday, 13 July 2023

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Industrial Development

Photo of Eoin Ó BroinEoin Ó Broin (Dublin Mid West, Sinn Fein)
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355. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment when the IDA began supporting companies to set up data centres in the State. [35116/23]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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IDA engages with overseas companies interested in investing, expanding or establishing in Ireland, and this may include discussions companies seeking to establish data centres.

Data centres serve a key infrastructure role in our society, supporting the success of the technology sector and enabling Ireland to become a destination of choice for the world’s leading technology companies. Some are owned and operated by large multinationals while others serve Ireland’s indigenous technology service providers. Data centres are integral for many of the services which we now take for granted and provide the foundation for almost all online aspects of our social and work lives, including video calling, messaging and apps, retail, banking, travel, media, and public service delivery. They are also necessary to technological advances such as cloud computing, quantum computing and AI, and the rapid growth of the use of internet services by both enterprise and consumers alike.

The Government published its revised policy statement on the “Role of Data Centres in Ireland’s Enterprise Strategy” in July 2022. Its revision was designed to ensure that the twin transition of decarbonisation and digitalisation of Ireland’s economy and society are complimentary and in harmony with environmental policy. This focus on the twin transition was reiterated in the White Paper on Enterprise, published in December 2022, which sets out the policy direction to ensure Ireland remains an attractive and sustainable place to do business.

In view of the capital intensity of data centres and their location, to date, in the greater Dublin area, IDA Ireland has not provided grant aid towards the construction or employment activities of data centres.


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