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Trade Strategy

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 22 January 2015

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Questions (181)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

181. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the extent to which trade continues to develop with various and new markets established through the efforts of his Department, embassies and consulates worldwide; the most successful locations in this regard in recent years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3253/15]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

The advancement of Ireland’s trade, tourism, investment and education promotion objectives is a central aspect of Ireland’s foreign policy and of the work of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and its Embassy network.

While the majority of Irish services and merchandise exports go to Europe and the US and we must continue to cultivate these markets, the Government is strongly focused on the further development of trading partnerships with other important emerging markets.

Following the launch of the Government Trade, Tourism and Investment Strategy, ‘Trading and Investing in a Smart Economy, 2010 - 2015’ in September 2010, and based on State agency priorities, a list of 27 priority markets were identified. Local Market Teams were established in each of these, chaired by the local Ambassador and consisting of representatives of the Embassy and the relevant State agencies present on the ground. These market teams submit annual market plans that are reviewed by the Export Trade Council, which I chair, and which encourages cooperation between all Government Departments and State agencies that work on trade, tourism, investment and education promotion.

In the Review of the Government Trade, Tourism and Investment Strategy, published in February last year, seven additional high potential and exploratory markets were identified as part of a ‘new market approach’, aimed at increasing our engagement with high growth markets in Asia, Latin America and Africa. The markets in question are as follows: Turkey, Indonesia, Nigeria, Mexico, Vietnam, Thailand and Chile.

Ireland now has a presence in all but one of the above markets. Guided by the Review, new Embassies have been opened in Bangkok (Thailand), Jakarta (Indonesia), Nairobi (Kenya) and Zagreb (Croatia), alongside the reopening of Ireland’s Embassy to the Holy See. Consulates-General have also been opened in Hong Kong (China), Austin (Texas, USA) and in Sao Paulo (Brazil). These new Embassies and Consulates will strengthen Ireland’s capacity to take advantage of emerging opportunities in these important markets, as well as complementing the existing trade promotion work of our Embassy network.

The Embassy network plays a crucial role in proactively addressing market access issues, supporting Irish businesses seeking to grow overseas, holding promotional events for, and in association with, State agencies and actively contributing to the organisation and conduct of Enterprise Ireland Ministerial-led trade missions and events overseas.

An Annex follows which details Ireland’s trade in goods and services by destination in 2013 and 2012 respectively.

Annex: Ireland’s Trade in Goods by Destination

-

Trade partner

Value of Trade 2013 (€ billion)

1

United States

23.6

2

Great Britain

14

3

Belgium

12.2

4

Germany

10.6

5

Netherlands

6.3

6

France

6.1

7

Switzerland

5.9

8

China

5.02

9

Spain

3.4

10

Italy

3.2

11

Japan

2.7

12

Northern Ireland

2.4

13

Norway

1.4

14

Denmark

1.2

15

Sweden

1.2

16

Poland

1.2

17

Canada

1.1

18

Mexico

1

19

Singapore

0.9

20

Australia

0.8

Ireland’s Trade in Services by Destination

-

Trade partners

Value of Trade 2012 (€ billion)

1

United States

30.6

2

United Kingdom

27.5

3

Netherlands

18.6

4

Germany

10.9

5

Gibraltar

10.9

6

France

8.8

7

Italy

7.9

8

Bermuda

4.4

9

Spain

4.3

10

Switzerland

4.2

11

Japan

3.6

12

Belgium

3.5

13

China

2.6

14

Sweden

2.1

15

Australia

2.0

16

India

1.7

17

Denmark

1.5

18

Norway

1.1

19

Singapore

1.0

20

Finland

0.9

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