The announcement of redundancies at both Novartis in Ringaskiddy and Molex in Shannon was very disappointing.
My Department, IDA Ireland and the other enterprise agencies under my remit are determined to source new investment and employment opportunities for Cork and Clare that will help offset many of these job losses. The meeting I convened in Shannon with representatives of the State's enterprise agencies and other key stakeholders was an important first step in responding to the Molex announcement. I will also be working closely with regional stakeholders in Cork through the Regional Enterprise Plan Steering Committee for the South-West to ensure that we can help the workers affected by the announcement from Novartis.
Our main priority, in both cases, is assisting those impacted find new employment opportunities. The Mid-West and South-West Regional Enterprise Plans – which I launched earlier this year – will be critical tools in that respect. These are designed to support the growth of business in the regions and their implementation will help to create quality new jobs.
Similarly, the IDA is already working hard to identify potential new investors for Clare and Cork. With respect to the former, the Agency will be marketing the Molex building to overseas firms for when the company ceases operating there. As for the latter, the planned redundancies do not take full effect until 2022 so there is at least time for intensive efforts to be taken to identify potential new investment for the area.
It is worth emphasising that the overall trend of employment and investment continues to be positive for both regions. The Mid-West region saw 1,000 net new jobs added by IDA Ireland client companies in 2018. The region has witnessed significant investment as well over the last three years and key employers in the region include many large-scale manufacturing employers such as Beckton Dickinson, Edwards Lifesciences, Analog Devices, Johnson and Johnson, Regeneron, Stryker and Zimmer. The South-West region also continues to be a very strong performer in attracting foreign direct investment, with almost 2,200 net new jobs added by multinational companies in 2018.