The inaugural Dublin Economic Monitor launched yesterday paints a largely optimistic story of recovery in the nation’s capital as a greater number of people return to work. As a result of the strengthening labour market, offices are again in greater demand, with rents in the main business district climbing by more than 18%.
The same office accommodation saw rents plummet by more than 50% during the crash compared to 40% in the city’s south suburbs.
Dublin Chamber chief executive Gina Quin said the survey highlighted the importance of Dublin to the economic vitality of the country.
“Dublin is the economic engine that drives Ireland and is the country’s main link to the world economy,” said Ms Quin.
“Given its importance to Ireland as a whole, we must do everything we can to ensure the Dublin region remains attractive to business and competitive on the world stage. Dublin accounts for 42% of Ireland’s GDP. To put that in context, London accounts for 21% of the UK economy.”
Failure to invest in the Dublin region would be a “body blow” to the country, Ms Quin added.
She also said Dublin does not compete with other Irish cities for investment but that its competition comes from other major European cities.
“The majority of companies want to invest in cities of scale, meaning that Dublin is not competing with other city regions in Ireland for investments, but rather the other relatively small number of magnet cities around the world,” she said. “Put simply, if a company can’t be accommodated in Dublin, their second choice won’t be Longford or Limerick but Zurich or Amsterdam.”
The monitor is a joint initiative from the four Dublin local authorities with input from a range of other institutions, including: DKM Consultants, KBC/ESRI and financial services company Markit.
It points towards falling commercial vacancy rates, an increase in the number of commuters in the city as well as airport traffic. Consumer sentiment is at a 12-year high with almost seven in 10 Dubliners expecting the economy to pick-up this year while business output has seen a sharp increase in the first quarter of 2015. Dublin companies also continue to increase staffing levels with strong levels of job creation in the first quarter.