MINISTER of State Michael D’Arcy says Limerick has several advantages over other parts of the country when it comes to attracting companies from the financial services sector.
The minister, who has special responsibility for financial services, made his comments on Monday after meeting with several stakeholders and employers as part of the Government’s IFS 2020 strategy.
It is hoped around 10,000 new jobs can be created over the next three years and that more than 3,000 of then will be located in regional towns and cities across the country.
During his visit to Limerick, Mr D’Arcy met with representatives of IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Innovate Limerick and Limerick City and County Council.
Several local politicians also attended the event as did representatives of companies such as WP Engine, Northern Trust and General Motors.
Speaking afterwards, the minister said Limerick has a number of advantages over other regional towns – particularly when it comes to the availability of commercial office space.
“I’m certainly satisfied that Limerick has a few really substantial benefits over other areas – there is a good availability of sites for office space. That is not available in many other areas. As a result of it being readily available I think it will be of big benefit,” he said.
Mike Cantwell, head of Innovate Limerick, says there is a lot of work ongoing in Limerick at present which is important in the context of Brexit.
“Really what we are trying to do is position Limerick as an another alternative to Dublin – where companies may be thinking of leaving London where is the space available and where can we get the skills and skills development,” he said.
One of the issues raised during Monday’s event was connectivity and the development of the M20.
“I describe it as Cork to Galway (motorway) with Limerick smack bang in the middle so Limerick will have the shorter commute time between both. My view is we have the national capital plan which will announced in November and there will be roads in that and road between Limerick and Cork is something that will be considered as one of the priority roads,” Minister D’Arcy told the Limerick Leader.