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€180m Plans to Boost Regional Development Launched

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar, with Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail Damien English and Minister of State for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation Robert Troy, have launched €180 million plans to boost regional development.

The government has committed to 9 enterprise plans, covering every region in the country. The Ministers launched the first of those plans, for the Mid-West today in Nenagh, Co. Tipperary.

The €180 million in funding is designed to generate new projects which create new jobs and help companies to grow in the region.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar said, “as a government we are committed to bringing jobs and investment to every part of the country. One of my priorities as Minister for Enterprise is to have 2.5 million people employed in the country by 2024. We want these to be good, long-term jobs in every county. We’ve developed 9 region-specific plans to do this and are investing up to €180 million to aid their implementation.”

“We want this to be a bottom-up approach, led by the local community, as they know what’s best for their area. We’ve chosen the Mid-West for the first one, and the remainder will be launched over the coming weeks.”

The plans, which set out actions to 2024 will each contain agreed ‘Strategic Objectives’ for enterprise development, accompanied by time-bound actions that deliver the objectives. Up to €180 million has been secured to drive implementation of the plans.

Each of the 9 plans have been developed throughout 2021 by Regional Steering Committees. Each Regional Committee is chaired by a senior figure from the private sector and includes the Enterprise Agencies, Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland, Local Enterprise Offices, Local Authorities, Regional Assemblies, higher and further education bodies and others. The plans also complement Our Rural Future, the whole-of-government framework to develop rural Ireland in the coming years.

Minister for Business, Employment and Retail, Damien English said, “reflected in the Mid-West plan is a huge appetite to grow job opportunities and facilitate enterprise development right across counties Tipperary, Limerick and Clare. Congratulations to Professor Eamonn Murphy, Chair of the Mid-West Steering Committee, Paraic Rattigan, Mid-West Programme Manager and all the Committee members for their work in delivering this ambitious, achievable plan.”

The Mid-West plan concentrates on measures to encourage innovation, focus on sustainability, enable enterprise growth in the region’s city, towns and rural communities, and on increasing economic activity for local Start-ups, Microbusinesses and SMEs. The funding of up to €180 million announced today will allow all regions in Ireland to pursue their plans and I look forward to working with everyone involved to deliver on their ambition.”

Minister of State for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation Robert Troy said, “the Regional Enterprise Plans to 2024 represent the ambition and drive within each region to capitalise on their unique strengths and seize the opportunities for their region. The Regional Plans that we are launching today and over the next few weeks set out a number of key strategic areas where regional stakeholders will work together to build a balanced regional recovery, one that is focussed on future enterprise development and sustainable job creation for the longer term.”

“I have been keen to ensure that funding will be made available to drive the Regional Enterprise Plans and I am very pleased that we have secured up to €180 million in funding over the coming years. This funding is necessary for the development of collaborative regional projects that will drive delivery of the objectives developed in the Regional Enterprise Plans and I look forward to launching the plans across the country in the coming weeks.”

Professor Eamonn Murphy, Chair of the Mid-West Regional Steering Committee said, “I am honoured to have the Tánaiste and both Ministers of State present here today at the launch of the Mid-West Regional Enterprise Plan. The plan is the result of in depth regional consultation and with key players. I must thank the Steering Committee for their time and commitment to the plan. One of the real success stories of the Mid-West REP is our ability to work collaboratively with a regional mindset. This plan when implemented will further enhance the strategic importance of this region nationally and internationally.”

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