Ireland claims it has secured 2,500 British jobs since the UK voted to leave the European Union, with MEP Brian Hayes applauding a “very good job” in exploiting uncertainty across the Irish Sea.
He said Ireland had “played our cards right” in convincing companies to relocate to Ireland ahead of Brexit, with confusion still surrounding the exact terms of the transition deal and Britain’s future trade relationship with the EU.
The IDA, Ireland’s foreign investment bureau, said around 2,500 jobs had been moved from the UK to Ireland since June 2016.
Mr Hayes said this economic offensive was “very positive” in a blog post on his website entitled ‘We are playing our cars right on securing Brexit jobs’.
He said: “These numbers reveal that Ireland has made very positive initial steps in attracting jobs because of Brexit. In the past year and a half, we have seen some major financial services players relocate part of their operations to Dublin such as JP Morgan and Barclays.
“This means more jobs for the Irish economy and a more developed financial services sector.”
Ireland began a charm offensive almost as soon as the Brexit result was announced in an attempt to convince businesses to relocate to Ireland, which will soon become the only English-speaking EU member state.
Along with Frankfurt and Paris, Dublin has attempted to fill to financial services vacuum which will soon be left by London, who has struggled to secure a special City deal after Brexit.
Mr Hayes said: “I believe we will start to see much more relocations being announced over the next year as the UK moves closer to exiting the EU.
“Banks and financial services firms are very keen to establish that foothold in the EU single market and Ireland provides a perfect gateway.”
He said Ireland’s softly-softly approach differed from other countries, including France and Germany, where a massive construction effort was launched last year to cater for any businesses likely to relocate from Britain.
Mr Hayues concluded: “Ireland, unlike some other countries, has been taking a subtle approach to attracting investment from Brexit and this has proved to be the best strategy.
“In particular, there has been a high degree of relocation of financial services firms to Dublin, due to our educated workforce, our well-developed financial infrastructure and a range of other favourable conditions. Clearly, this is very positive for Ireland and Dublin.”