The largest foreign investors in Ireland, in the high-tech, pharmaceutical and chemicals sectors, today set out why they believe Ireland remains a uniquely attractive location in which to do business.
Company chiefs from the largest multinationals also said that a skilled workforce, favourable tax regime and an enterprise-focused business environment are compelling reasons why Ireland is well placed to win major new investments in the future.
The IBEC groups that represent the country’s pharma-chemical and high-tech sectors, PharmaChemical Ireland and ICT Ireland, launched two reports for their respective industries, both entitled ‘Why Ireland should be your location of choice’.
The reports, aimed at foreign corporate decision-makers, detail the positive experience of the multinational companies operating here, and include first-hand accounts from the heads of their Irish operations.
A survey of pharma-chemical companies conducted for the report found that confidence in the sector remains very high: 80% of companies said that they plan to expand their Irish operations, 80% expect to invest in R&D, and 75% remain positive about the future of their corporations.
The publications find that Ireland remains a key global centre for science-based industry providing employment for 24,500 people in the pharma-chemical sector and 83,000 people in the ICT sector, over 50% of whom hold a third-level qualification. Together the two sectors export products to the value of almost €70 billion – almost 50% of the national total.
Speaking at the launch, Julie O’Neill PharmaChemical Ireland Chairperson and General Manager of Gilead Life Sciences said: “Ireland has a number of key and sustainable advantages over rival investment locations. We have local management expertise in a wide range of areas, which makes it much easier for global companies to develop their operations here. This asset is not something that Ireland is going to lose and could prove decisive when it comes to winning new investment.”
Also speaking at the launch, Lionel Alexander, Chair of ICT Ireland and Vice President of Hewlett-Packard (Manufacturing) Limited Ireland said: “As companies in Ireland face the challenges of an increasingly competitive global market, the close relationship with government, tertiary institutes and research centres has helped companies expand from core manufacturing to include marketing and R&D activities. This has been crucial to securing existing investment and is the key to attracting major new investment in the years ahead.”
The report also illustrates why local and global leaders continue to invest in Ireland. Companies based here talk of the Irish “can do” attitude, a commitment to excellence, teamwork, agility and productivity.