There are 27,600 extra people at work in Ireland compared to one year ago, according to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD. The Minister has commended all involved in making 2014 a great year for jobs.
“I wish to pay tribute in particular to the twin heroes of the recovery – first of all entrepreneurs and small business-people, who create two thirds of all new jobs. And secondly workers across the economy, who through their ingenuity and sheer hard work have ensured that we can continue to expand businesses and attract more FDI”.
Minister Bruton also expressed appreciation to the officials in his department and in government agencies who have worked on the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs”.
Among the new supports for job-creation in 2014 are:
- A new network of 31 Local Enterprise Offices across the country to provide more services for entrepreneurs
- Extra IDA advance facilities in locations across the country
- 20 extra IDA staff in foreign markets aimed at creating 10,000 extra jobs
- New Regional Aid Map agreed at EU level, which means that additional parts of the country are now eligible for grant aid for job-creation
- Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition – to promote and encourage more young people to consider start-up as a career choice
- Launch of 2015 Year of Irish Design to support more design businesses and create more jobs
- A range of new SFI world-class technology centres up and running, with significant investment from the Dept of Jobs as well as industry
Minister Bruton also pointed to a number of competitiveness measures delivered in 2014, including:
- Enactment of the Companies Bill 2012
- Establishment of the Competition Protection Commission
- Enactment of the Employment Permits Act 2014 and launch of the ICT Skills Plan, as part of drive to make Ireland the internet capital of Europe
- Publication of a new Entrepreneurship Strategy, to make it easier to start a new business
- Publication of a new FDI plan, to drive continued multinational jobs growth in the post-BEPS world
The number of Agencies under the remit of Minister Bruton’s Department reduced by 37 over the course of the year, with the abolition of the County Enterprise Boards, the merger of the Competition Authority and the National Consumer Agency, and the integration of Forfás into the Department of Jobs. Further rationalisations will take place early next year with the enactment of the Workplace Relations Bill which merges 5 bodies into 2.
Summarising the gains made in the past year, the Minister pointed to:
- 27,600 extra people at work in past 12 months
- 80,000 additional people at work since Action Plan for Jobs launched
- Every region of the country, and virtually every sector of the economy, showing growth
- Regions with history of high unemployment such as the South East – which Minister Bruton has brought a new focus to, via the South East Plan – showing particularly strong performance. The South East has had the largest decrease in unemployment in the State
- Exports continuing to grow, with services exports up 10% so far this year and goods exports up 2% – following on from strong performances in 2011, 2012 and 2013
Continuing, Minister Bruton said:
“Many people have yet to feel the effects of the jobs recovery that is taking place, and we undoubtedly have a long way to go. Unemployment and emigration, though falling, are still far too high. However with 80,000 jobs added since we launched the Action Plan for Jobs – 27,000 in the past twelve months – we can have confidence that we are on the right track. The challenge now is to continue implementing our plan to get people back to work”.