Thursday, 7 March 2019

Ceisteanna (51)

Billy Kelleher

Ceist:

51. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the status of regional IDA Ireland site visits and vacant IDA Ireland properties nationwide at 31 December 2018 by county; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [11170/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Business)

Regional development is a key priority for my Department. We understand the importance of achieving the best possible spread of employment and investment across the country and my Department and its Agencies have been working hard towards that goal. Significant progress has already been made, with 58% of all IDA client-supported employment now located outside of Dublin. This figure represents the highest such figure in the history of the Agency. Our aim is to increase this percentage further in 2019.

The availability of marketable serviced land and buildings in advance of demand is a key element in the IDA's ability to compete for mobile foreign direct investment (FDI). Not only does such a supply of properties help the Agency to secure high quality jobs but it also allows projects to begin at an earlier date by diminishing difficulties associated with land acquisition, planning and construction. It therefore remains an important means by which the IDA can encourage and attract new investors to Ireland. The IDA currently owns 29 properties across Ireland. Of these, 14 are occupied by IDA clients with the remainder available for prospective or existing investors. The table below sets out the location of these various properties.

Site visits help the IDA showcase regional locations to prospective investors. The Agency hosted 607 site visits in 2018, with over 55% of these visits taking place in regional locations.

I want to emphasise that the IDA does its utmost to encourage its clients to locate or expand in regional Ireland. This is just as much a priority for the Agency as it is for my Department and the Government. Indeed, the IDA is continuing to target an increase of investment of 30% to 40% in every region by the end of its current strategy in 2019. At the same time, we must recognise that the final decision as to where to invest always rests with the firm concerned. It is also the case, no matter what efforts we make to underline the undoubted benefits of regional locations, that certain overseas companies will only consider investing in large urban areas for various commercial or operational reasons.

We are though achieving real results in deepening the spread of regional FDI. The IDA’s 2018 results bear out that assessment. Last year the Agency delivered 113 regional investments with 56% of net new jobs created outside Dublin. Moreover, the last four years have seen over 44,000 new FDI-driven jobs created outside the capital. We will continue to do our utmost to reinforce and strengthen these positive trends and to further job creation across all parts of Ireland.

The following table outlines the number and status of IDA owned properties by County.

County

Occupied

Marketable

Total

Cork

0

3

3

Dublin

3

0

3

Galway

3

2

5

Kerry

3

3

6

Mayo

1

0

1

Offaly

1

0

1

Sligo

1

1

2

Tipperary

1

0

1

Waterford

0

3

3

Westmeath

1

1

2

Wicklow

0

2

2

Total

14

15

29

The following table outlines the number of IDA site visits by county in each quarter of 2018.

County

Q1 2018

Q2 18

Q3 2018

Q4 2018

Full Year 2018

Carlow

1

2

0

4

7

Cavan

0

1

0

1

2

Clare

4

3

2

4

13

Cork

10

14

21

16

61

Donegal

0

3

3

2

8

Dublin

69

72

68

60

269

Galway

10

20

12

12

54

Kerry

0

5

3

2

10

Kildare

4

0

1

3

8

Kilkenny

0

2

1

2

5

Laois

4

2

1

3

10

Leitrim

2

3

0

1

6

Limerick

8

7

10

10

35

Longford

0

0

2

3

5

Louth

6

6

3

5

20

Mayo

2

2

3

3

10

Meath

1

3

1

1

6

Monaghan

0

1

0

2

3

Offaly

0

1

3

1

5

Roscommon

0

1

1

1

3

Sligo

5

3

4

3

15

Tipperary

1

1

2

1

5

Waterford

5

9

5

2

21

Westmeath

3

9

6

4

22

Wexford

0

1

2

0

3

Wicklow

0

1

0

0

1

Total

135

172

154

146

607