Companies supported by Enterprise Ireland now employ over 215,000 people, the highest number in history, the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation have said - adding 18,846 jobs last year.
The agency responsible for developing Irish businesses globally is reporting its highest ever figures, with 215,207 people now employed by firms backed by EI.
Over 60 per cent of the new jobs were created outside Dublin last year.
The State agency says Brexit is yet to impact Irish exporters, but it expects 2019 will be a challenging year for Irish companies.
That said Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys said that there is a positive outlook for Irish business heading into 2019:
“These record results are a great achievement and a testament to the resilience of Irish companies in the context of Brexit. They are particularly welcome in the context of similarly strong results from IDA-supported companies in 2018," said Minister Humphreys.
"I am especially pleased that 61% of the jobs created were from regionally-based companies and to see that there were increases in every region. In addition to providing employment, these State-backed companies make a significant contribution to the economy and spent €26.8bn in 2017.”
Half-way through a four-year strategy, Enterprise Ireland welcomed the figures released today.
“2018 was another strong year for job creation with our client companies now employing 215,207 people across Ireland and creating over 18,800 new jobs. Now at the half-way mark into our four-year strategy to Build Scale and Expand Reach 2017-2020, we are on course to exceed the ambitious target of creating 60,000 new jobs by the end of 2020," added Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland.