Jobs figures and strong exchequer returns bring promising start to 2013

Fine Gael TD, for Dublin Fingal, Alan Farrell, has said that jobs figures released by Enterprise Ireland bring a promising start to 2013. More than 13,600 new jobs were created by Irish exporting companies last year, representing the highest net gain in jobs in 6 years. The latest exchequer returns also show that the State’s finances are continuing to stabilise.

“The publication of Enterprise Ireland’s end of year results brought a positive start to 2013, and shows that we are making consistent progress on the jobs front. Irish exporting companies created more than 13,600 new jobs in 2012; a net gain of more than 3,800. That’s the highest net gain since 2006. The end of year exchequer figures brought further encouraging news; they show that tax revenues were ahead of targets last year.

“Creating new jobs and bringing our public finances into balance are essential as we tackle our unemployment levels, which remain far too high. The Government has been tasked with completely rebuilding the economy from a broken, failed model, to a sustainable one based on innovation and enterprise. As well as implementing changes to support small, local businesses, we are also determined to help as many companies as possible to expand into lucrative export markets.

“A number of measures have been implemented as part of the Action Plan for Jobs specifically targeted at helping potential exporters. These include a new Potential Exporters Division within Enterprise Ireland, a new Micro Enterprise Division, a scheme to target international entrepreneurs and another to promote greater female entrepreneurship. This was underlined by an aggressive programme of sixteen Ministerial level trade missions targeting new growth markets for Irish companies.

“It is significant that 73% of the jobs gains have been located in areas outside the Dublin/Mid-Eastern Region. After large job losses in the exporting sector in 2008, 2009 and 2010, these results for 2012 mark a significant improvement in this crucial part of the economy.

“The Taoiseach recently underlined his determination to keep job creation at the top of the political agenda. A special Cabinet meeting on jobs will be held this month, with a particular focus on small and medium enterprises and the domestic economy. The Government will continue to implement a range of measures aimed specifically at job creation, with this year’s Action Plan for Jobs due to be published shortly.

“Irish companies are proving that they have the capacity and the ambition to expand into new markets. For every one job created in an Enterprise Ireland company, an additional job is created in the domestic economy. New jobs were created last year despite the fact that most export markets were in economic difficulty. The global economy should improve in the year ahead; representing a major opportunity for Irish companies to further expand in 2013. I am confident that the progress shown by Irish companies over the last 12 months can be improved in the year ahead.”