Tánaiste welcomes Diageo announcement

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan has welcomed today's announcement by Diageo.

The makers of Guinness stout pledged to keep Dublin's famous St James's Gate brewing site open to protect the "heritage" of the brand and build a new €650m brewery in an unpecified Dublin site.

Diageo said it will instead close two smaller breweries at Kilkenny and Dundalk, at the cost of more than half of the 450 brewing staff employed in the country, however.

"This is a major investment that secures the future of brewing in Ireland," she said.

"I also welcomethe company’s intention to retain and upgrade the St James’s Gate brewery which is of great historic significance to Dublin."

According to Brendan Smith, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food: "This leading edge project is very good news for Ireland and the strongest possible endorsement by Diageo of our global competitiveness."

The Tánaiste acknowledged the recognition by Diageo that on completion of the project in 2013 there will be a net reduction in employment.

“While this is five years away it is very important that the impact on employment is minimised and my Department will work closely with the company to secure the best possible outcome,” the Tánaiste concluded.

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