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More than half a million jobs supported by Government agencies last year – Byrne

Businesses supported by Government agencies employed more than half a million people in Ireland last year, according to Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne.

19th June 2022 - Senator Maria Byrne

Businesses supported by Government agencies employed more than half a million people in Ireland last year, according to Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne.

Senator Byrne said the figure demonstrates Fine Gael’s commitment to economic growth, job creation and balanced regional expansion across Ireland.

Jobs growth is occurring in all regions with 70% of growth happening outside of Dublin, despite the unprecedented challenges posed by the pandemic and Brexit for the business community across the country.

Senator Byrne, Fine Gael’s Seanad spokesperson on Finance, said: “Fine Gael is committed to supporting businesses and entrepreneurs which is central to our broader national recovery after the pandemic, as well as regional jobs growth and development.

“Figures provided to me by my Fine Gael colleague, Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail Damien English TD, show 207,894 jobs were supported by Enterprise Ireland last year through their client companies, which in 2021 continued to provide a range of supports to Irish businesses to assist their recovery from the impact of the pandemic and in response to Brexit.

“The supports included the Sustaining Enterprise Fund, the Accelerated Recovery Fund, the Online Retail Scheme and the Ready for Customs Grant.

“The numbers directly employed in multinational sector in Ireland reach 275,384 – the highest Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) employment level ever

“And there was more positive news when it comes to Local Enterprise Offices, with new figures show that they financially supported 7,158 small businesses in their portfolio across the country

“These companies in turn employ 35,729 people and there are many thousands of other jobs supported by the LEO Network through non-financially supported means – such as training, mentoring and networking.

“In Údarás na Gaeltachta, there were 7,809 full-time jobs in client companies at the end of the year, Gaeltacht companies showed good levels of stability and they witnessed a degree of recovery in terms of employment numbers.

“There was also a wide range of low-cost loans and direct financial supports provided by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment in 2020 and 2021 in response to Covid and Brexit.

“Regarding grants, the Restart Grant Scheme approved 108,489 successful applications with payments of €632.3m. The Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID provided €20.96m to 5,500 applications.

“In terms of low-cost loans, the COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme saw 8,023 loans of over €545 million drawn down during 2020 and 2021.

“At the end of January 2022, 1,112 loans to the value of €25,770,271 were drawn down under the Covid-19 Loan Scheme, while 3,471 Future Growth Loan Scheme loans were also provided to businesses, amounting to over €747 million.

“We have faced many challenges in recent years – Brexit, Covid-19, and now war in Ukraine. In each one of these, Fine Gael working in Government has demonstrated our ability to be agile and responsive to the needs of the business community and we are in a strong position to help grow our economy further which will create more and better job opportunities nationwide,” Senator Byrne concluded.

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