The Irish economy has changed greatly in the last Forty years. An educated workforce and Urbanisation of our towns and cities has seen an industry shift. There are a number of important factors that allowed this to happen so quickly. Ireland’s membership of alliances such as the E.U. and the O.E.C.D and the directives that were incurred as a result of these memberships.
More recently in the Nineties the economy had enjoyed a period of prosperity which was generally accredited to the provision of subsidies to knowledge based industries such as I.T., Financial Sectors and Research & Development. This coupled with a desirable location and a new highly educated workforce. As stated in the department of finances report in 2011 the economy experienced imbalances due to bad auditing systems in the banking and building sectors.
“The Irish economy was transformed over the past two decades. Per capita income rose strongly, converging towards and subsequently overtaking European average levels. However, from the early part of the last decade, imbalances began to emerge which made the economy increasingly vulnerable. A major property bubble began to unwind from 2007, and the fall-out from this was exacerbated by the major deterioration in the external environment. As a result, GDP has fallen by around 15% from its peak in Q4 2007.”(Dept of finance, Mar 2011)
The nature of jobs is a concept based on a number of variables integral to that employment. The government have become aware of resources the Irish workforce and economy possess that allow it to sustain growth here. The Irish government have now decided to champion Indigenous companies and knowledge based companies as part of their argument of how the nature of jobs will dictate the success of the economy. This report will analysis the research supporting the argument, breakdown the government’s strategy for this plan and discuss the strength of this argument.
2. Exodus of Multi-nationals
Dell made the straightforward move to Poland crippling a large part of the Irish economy in the process. The bulk of employment was in manufacturing and was not reliant on any of Ireland’s strengths such as human capital, geography etc.
The company says it expects the reduction to be complete by January next year with workers beginning to leave the plant in April. Its products make up at least 5.5% of Irish exports and 2% of gross domestic product - the total value of all goods and services produced within the economy. Economists have warned that each job at Dell underpins another four or five Irish jobs. It is estimated that another 10,000 jobs in sub-supply companies rely on Dell business. Dell says the move is among a series of actions being taken to simplify operations, improve productivity and reduce costs. (Rte News, 2009)
Dells decision to leave Ireland had further repercussions with the exit of the market of Flextronics, a supplier to Dell. Half of foreign companies in Ireland regretted setting up in Ireland according to a survey commissioned by the IDA.
Similarly Fruit of the loom finally wound down its operations in Ireland in 2004. The Tanaiste at the time, Mary Harney, cited the fact that the sector was no longer competitive in this part of the world and Ireland had to attract sustainable industry consistent with recent economic performance.
Albeit the Irish economy entered a deep recession in 2008 it is obvious, as minster Harney hinted, that Ireland still has the infrastructure to house knowledge based industry.
3. Irish Government Action Plans.
The Irish government has developed action plans published by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. The 2012 plan for jobs...