New jobs inititative seeks help from council

The Government’s new ‘Succeed in Ireland’ inititative has appealed for the help Laois County Councillors to help them attract more foreign direct investment into the region.

The Government’s new ‘Succeed in Ireland’ inititative has appealed for the help Laois County Councillors to help them attract more foreign direct investment into the region.

ConnectIreland appointed by the IDA to promote, market and deliver the Succeed in Ireland initiative. Their aim of is to create up to 5,000 new jobs from foreign direct investment.

Niall Hughes, Director of Business Development with ConnectIreland told councillors this week that they want to target more the small to medium sized business. He claimed the IDA were “doing an excellent job bringing in larger business.”

“ConnectIreland is a referral system, where we are looking for individuals, diaspora, anybody to spread the word. There’s nobody here in this room that doesn’t have a son, daughter or cousin living abroad and we’re asking you to connect with those people just to get the word out that Ireland is open for business.

“When bigger companies come in they are always looking at bigger cities like Dublin, Cork, Galway, what we’re trying to do is increase the regional spread of foreign direct investment, trying to encourage smaller companies that want to come to Ireland to look at the regions such as the Laois area,” he said.

ConnectIreland have also recently hired 30 staff in Kilkenny and offer a financial reward for people who refer companies that eventually set up and create at least one sustainable job.

The councillors were supportive of the new initiative.

“This is a great step forward, but the amount of red tape and hurdles that you have to go through to set up a new company in Ireland would put people off,” Cllr John Moran said.

While, Cllr Paul Mitchell highlighted the struggle Portarlington had with the IDA.

“We’ve been trying for years to get someone into the Avon factory, but we’ve been told that Portarlington is not high on their priority list. The IDA have let us down badly,” he said

Cllr Alan Hand said there needed to be a better emphasis on selling Ireland, and showing foreign companies what the country had to offer to them.