EBS boss backs €2bn Chinese trade hub for Cork

The chief executive of the Educational Building Society, Fergus Murphy, is putting his name behind a €2bn plan to create a Chinese trade hub and university campus in Cork.

EBS commissioned a feasibility study into developing Cork’s north and south docklands as a Chinese gateway to the European market.

A copy of the feasibility study has been submitted to Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney.

The original proposal was that the project would be developed as a joint initiative by the Irish and Chinese governments.

However, it is now believed that the project will be advanced as a public private partnership, according to weekend media reports.

The proposal is different to the Athlone business park proposal.

The Athlone business park plan will see a massive exhibition centre for buyers to assess products before placing bulk orders.

The Cork gateway plan is to become a Sino-EU business, trade, education and cultural gateway.

The project would be built over 10 years and see the construction of a campus that could attract 30,000 students and employ up to 40,000 people.

The idea has been inspired by the success of the Irish Financial Service’s Centre.

The plans have yet to be discussed by the Cabinet, but it is understood high level talks between the Irish and Chinese governments took place during the recent visit of Chinese vice-president Xi Jinping and his delegation.


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