A number of US multinationals and their teams in Ireland are going through very difficult times. They are struggling with uncertainty about their jobs and what it means for them and their loved ones, as well as coping with wall-to-wall media speculation.
The American Chamber of Commerce Ireland supports these companies and their teams.
Ireland benefits greatly from being one of the most globalized small countries in the world, with an exceptional level of multinational investment and world-class talent. This means that Ireland is also exposed to headwinds in the global economy, which could lead to global companies changing course.
We are currently seeing continued benefits while also seeing the fallout from some headwinds. This is because Ireland has been incredibly successful in attracting such a diverse range of multinational investments – in all sectors – serving almost all major global markets.
In the last 10 days, IDA-supported companies announced 520 new jobs and a $1 billion advanced manufacturing facility was also officially opened, also creating hundreds of new jobs. These announcements coincided with the announcement of job cuts in the technology sector.
In these challenging times, there are some key numbers that we shouldn’t lose sight of.
In Ireland, 342,000 people are directly and indirectly employed by US multinationals
For example, 342,000 people are directly and indirectly employed by US multinationals in Ireland. Four out of five medical stents that save and improve lives around the world are made in Ireland. And seven out of ten brain tumor surgeries performed worldwide use surgical technology developed in Ireland.
US multinationals invest an average of €28 billion each year in the domestic Irish economy on salaries, goods and services and capital expenditures.
There is hardly a community across Ireland that does not benefit directly or indirectly from the above figures.
And the “luck of the Irish” really has nothing to do with it. Every investment decision made to create those 342,000 jobs was a decision. The choice was typically made based on a rigorous analysis of multiple locations around the world and key metrics.
These considerations include talent availability, access to markets, educational and research environments, digital and physical infrastructure, political and economic stability, and quality of life. Emotion or luck have no place in these considerations.
As we express our solidarity with those working for multinational companies who are going through uncertain times, we also remain confident that US investment in Ireland and Ireland’s hard-earned position as one of the US’s most trusted business partners is rock solid. But we have to keep our focus.
Make no mistake, competition for foreign investment will intensify and Ireland faces unprecedented competition for the next wave of investment. Ireland needs to focus on the factors that are attracting this investment here.
In the six-year period they examined, more than one in four employees at foreign companies either switched to a domestic company or became self-employed
She should do so trusting the numbers; that a third of US multinationals have been here for more than 20 years – some of them employing the third generation of the same family.
Importantly, multinational and national labor markets are more integrated than some might think. Talent spillover from multinationals to Irish companies has been analyzed by the OECD. They found that in the six-year period they examined, more than one in four employees at foreign companies either switched to a domestic company or became self-employed. In addition, more than one in three startup founders previously worked for a foreign company.
The factors that have led to record levels of multinational investment in the US and job creation in Ireland have not gone away in the past two weeks. And the companies that have announced job losses have all said they remain fully committed to Ireland.
It is in Ireland’s hands to ensure that it protects and nurtures the factors that have created this remarkable, mutually beneficial transatlantic friendship.
Mark Redmond is CEO of American ChamBer of Commerce Ireland.
https://www.independent.ie/business/us-foreign-direct-investment-in-ireland-is-strong-and-diversified-42135646.html US foreign direct investment in Ireland is strong and diversified