THE announcement that Filtertek in Newcastle West is to expand and create 35 new manufacturing jobs in the next five years has been widely welcomed in the area.
And it has raised hopes that the new Filtertek jobs will be followed by further job creation in other sectors, given the very high rate of unemployment in the area. Unemployment in Newcastle West is higher than the national average.
The expansion at Filtertek was announced on Tuesday and is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through IDA Ireland.
The new positions will be a mix of machine operators, moulding technicians, engineers, quality technicians and production supervisors.
“This is a great vote of confidence in the skills base of Newcastle West and in the economy, and it will bring Filtertek’s total employment to almost 100 people in the area,” Fine Gael TD Dan Neville said. “Manufacturing has been neglected by previous governments but since taking office Minister Bruton has been working towards creating more jobs in this area. Today’s announcement marks another step towards securing more manufacturing jobs and it brings us closer to the goal of creating 100,000 new jobs by 2016. “
“I know that there are still too many people out of work in Limerick but the Government remains focused on job creation and on spreading the recovery to all regions of the country.
“We are very lucky in Newcastle West to have high-quality employers like Filtertek,” his party colleague Patrick O’Donovan said. “This announcement is a major vote of confidence by Filtertek and the government in Newcastle West and as a local person representing the area I am delighted that this announcement has received support from Minister Richard Bruton.”
He added his hope that the expansion by Filtertek would be the catalyst for further investment in the area. “ I believe that there are further opportunities that can be explored for County Limerick in the coming months,” he said.
Filtertek, which manufactures filtration and other components for medical devices, opened in Newcastle West in 1982 and is part of the ITW medical company. Announcing the expansion, ITW company vice-president Law Burks said they were “ excited about growing our business in Ireland” and said they were also “thankful for the assistance received from the Irish Government and the IDA.”