Latest IDA site visit data raise regional concerns

Latest IDA site visit data raise regional concerns

There was an increase in overall visits from prospective foreign investment companies to IDA sites in 2016 — but a drop in such visits in Munster, writes Pádraig Hoare.

The percentage of site visits going to the Greater Dublin area increased from 47% to 48% in 2016, with the number in Dublin City and county themselves increasing from 43% to 45%.

However, while the number of visits to Cork, Limerick and Clare increased, the overall number of site visits to Munster dropped with 149 being recorded in 2015 versus 144 in 2016.

Fianna Fáil spokesperson for enterprise and jobs, Niall Collins, said the drop in visits to Kerry, Tipperary and Waterford made a mockery of government policy of rejuvenating the regions and that Dublin was still favoured.

He said: “Three of the six counties in Munster have seen a year-on-year reduction in the number of site visits facilitated by the IDA. The counties with the drops are the counties with the biggest need for investment — Kerry, Tipperary and Waterford.”

IDA client companies created 18,627 jobs in 2016 across a range of sectors, with every region of Ireland posting net employment gains. Visits increased to 638 in 2016 from 565 in 2015. Kerry had just three site visits, down from six, Waterford went from 31 to 17 and Tipperary went from 12 to eight.

By contrast, Dublin visits increased from 242 in 2015 to 284 in 2016, Carlow went from one to nine and Westmeath 28 to 36.

An IDA spokesperson told the Irish Examiner that site visits only were not an accurate reflection of the bigger picture on promoting destinations to FDA.

He said: “It should be borne in mind that site visit activity is not the only evidence, nor is it a true reflection of IDA’s marketing activity in any region. It should also be considered that companies often visit a number of different locations in Ireland during visits. The decision by a company on ultimate locations is influenced by a number of factors, the most important considerations being access to qualified talent, the availability of property solutions, proximity to transport hubs and the availability of business support services.”

This article first appeared in the Irish Examiner.

More in this Section

Stormont agriculture minister: UK Government may have to help NI farmersStormont agriculture minister: UK Government may have to help NI farmers

Irish brands 'could lose 14% of value' due to virus spreadIrish brands 'could lose 14% of value' due to virus spread

Google pays £44m in UK corporation tax and hands £1bn to staff, accounts showGoogle pays £44m in UK corporation tax and hands £1bn to staff, accounts show

WhatsApp limits message forwarding to slow the spread of coronavirus misinformationWhatsApp limits message forwarding to slow the spread of coronavirus misinformation


Lifestyle

As online retailers report record sales in loungewear, classic cuffed sweatpants have become a hot ticket item. Already a go-to look for off-duty celebs, the humble sweatsuit cemented its status when Tom Ford showed 80s-inspired grey marl sportswear pieces in his autumn winter collection earlier this year.Fashion: don't sweat it!

Seeking inspiration for all that extra time at home? Use it to discover the art of cooking and baking with your children.Fun & Food: The family that cooks together...

W E DON’T have a large amount of activities to do right now. So why not get a larger mount? If those opening lines give you a headache, don’t worry — at least you weren’t hit on the head with a mace.GameTech: Bannerlord flies the flag for escapism

Our window on the world opens wide for tonight.Homes from Mayo, Tyrone and Cork tonight on RTÉ series Home of the Year

More From The Irish Examiner