|US chip giant Intel is Ireland's largest industrial employer. Since 1989, Intel has invested over $7 billion transforming the 360 acre former stud farm campus in Leixlip, Co. Kildare into a key manufacturing centre for the US company.
Lisbon Treaty:The American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland said on Thursday that Ireland’s membership of the EU underpins over 300,000 jobs within US multinationals. The Chamber which represents the interests of US multinationals in Ireland welcomed the decision by Government to hold a second referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.
“This removes the uncertainty created by the No vote last July, we now have direction and the opportunity to address the concerns of the electorate which resulted in the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty”,said Joanne Richardson, Chief Executive of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland.
IBEC Director General Turlough O Sullivan on Thursday also welcomed the decision: “The rejection of the Lisbon Treaty has left Ireland politically isolated in Europe at a very uncertain and challenging time. The roadmap presented by government sets out a means whereby Irish concerns can be definitively addressed, so we can move forward with our European partners to tackle shared concerns together. Ireland will only succeed if we take our place at the very centre of European decision-making.
"At a time of increasing economic challenges Ireland must aim to boost trade to the EU and beyond to safeguard jobs and investment. As one of the most open economies in the world, our dependence on exports far exceeds that of larger countries. In fact we export over 85% of everything we produce. Previous treaties have brought great benefits and have opened-up many new opportunities for Irish business. This Lisbon Treaty has the potential to do the same.
"Our membership of the EU and in particular our access to Europe's single market has seen a dramatic rise in our exports into Europe. These exports have more than doubled since we joined the European Economic Community in 1973 and now make up almost half of total exports. Access to the European market and its customer base of 500 million people has been a vital ingredient in our success
"Irish exporters are facing increasingly difficult economic conditions and many jobs are at risk. Now more than ever is a time to focus attention on our trade with EU and beyond to safeguard jobs and boost investment.
“The rejection on 12 June of the Lisbon Treaty has damaged our international reputation and, consequently, reduced our ability to influence decisions that affect the Irish economy. To suggest our decision of last June comes without a price tag is naive. There are negative consequences, which are already being felt. The agreement at the European Summit begins the process of restoring Ireland’s position as an important member of the world’s largest economic area,” concluded O’ Sullivan.