Economic growth and investment is key to the continued viability of the south east region of Ireland according to Anne-Marie Tierney-Le Roux of IDA Ireland
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Economic growth and investment is key to the continued viability of the south east region of Ireland, regional manager of the IDA Ireland south east region Anne-Marie Tierney-Le Roux told delegates at the recent Engineers Ireland Annual Conference.

Tierney-Le Roux was speaking at the conference, which took place in the Hotel Kilkenny last month. She outlined IDA’s business plan for the next five years as well as offering further details on the plans specific to the south east region.

Tierney-Le Roux took up her current role after leaving her post as IDA Ireland director of Europe, where she was responsible for leading European foreign direct investment to Ireland across a network of offices in Paris, Frankfurt and London. She began her presentation – where she offered an insight into the world of foreign direct investment in the context of the impact that the engineering industry has had in a location like the south east of Ireland – by outlining IDA Ireland’s targets for the next five years. These targets include 80,000 new jobs, 900 investments and a €3 billion research and development investment target between now and the end of 2019.

Tierney-Le Roux explained some of the thinking that takes place prior to an organisation choosing Ireland – or the south-east region – as a location for foreign direct investment.

“Almost every aspect of a country, from its infrastructure through to its quality of life, is key when it comes to the decision-making process behind choosing a location for FDI. Ensuring Ireland’s continued attractiveness for investment will require a stable macroeconomic environment and continued support for the consistent pro-enterprise policies behind Ireland’s success to date,” she said.

These policies included a competitive corporate tax regime, high quality education and skill development and a safe, stable and attractive living and working environment. “IDA Ireland staff talk about things like tax, track-record, talent, education and the collective research centres. These are what Ireland’s value proposition is to companies for foreign direct investment.  This is what people that are working in IDA discuss on a day-to-day basis when we are speaking with CEOs of companies that may be looking to set up and operate in Ireland.”

IDA shifts focus


Tierney-Le Roux spoke of a shift in focus for IDA Ireland as it pushes to secure increased investment in regional areas such as the south east. “Our target strategy at the moment for regions across the country is that IDA would deliver an uplift of between 30-40 per cent of investments outside the areas of Dublin and Cork in the next five years.

“That is a significant change and a significant driver of our new strategy. In comparison, in previous years we have definitely struggled to secure investment to the regional locations,” she said.

Tierney-Le Roux pointed out the positive impact that foreign direct investment has on economic advantage and in terms of engineering in particular. There are more than 1,000 IDA Ireland companies that employ more than 187,000 people.  Latest economic statistics indicate that one in every five jobs in the Irish economy is totally dependent on foreign direct investment.

“At IDA Ireland, we keep a close eye on this economic measure because for us the knock on effect across the indigenous space is key to the impact that foreign direct investment can have in terms of sustainability within the Irish economy.”

The IDA has introduced a new strategy, called Winning, which outlines the areas where it is focused on for the engineering sector in the next number of years – up until 2019. Winning is focused on encouraging existing companies that are already based in Ireland to do more, attracting new investment, increasing the focus on research, development and innovation and working hard at deepening the engineering and technical skills base.

“IDA is targeting more investments and more jobs – a 30 per cent to 40 per cent increase in projects which equates to 48 new projects for the south-east region. We plan to work closely with the 71 existing IDA Ireland supported companies in the region to retain and strengthen their presence and to win investments in key areas such as global business services and technology, high-value manufacturing and convergence opportunities.”

Latest IDA developments


A €5 million investment in a new advanced manufacturing unit at IDA Business and Technology Park, Waterford, is planned along with a €150 million property investment programme by IDA Ireland to include the development of utility intensive strategic sites as well as the development and upgrade of IDA Ireland’s regionally dispersed business and technology parks.

Tierney-Le Roux also mentioned that two new advanced technology buildings are in the pipeline for Waterford and Carlow, while a dedicated IDA Ireland south-east regional team will be put in place to help companies choose, locate and grow in the region.

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Economic growth and investment is key to the continued viability of the south east region of Ireland, regional manager of the IDA Ireland south east region Anne-Marie Tierney-Le Roux told delegates at the recent Engineers Ireland Annual Conference. Tierney-Le Roux was speaking at the conference, which took place in the...