Legislation will be published before the end of the year to allow
Enterprise Ireland and IDA carry out enterprise development functions in
the Shannon Free Zone after Government agreement was secured by Minister
for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD this week.
Minister Bruton and Minister Varadkar announced in May this year the
Government’s plan to create a new world-class aviation industry at Shannon
as part of a series of reforms of Government agencies operating in the
region. Central to that plan was the decision to merge Shannon Airport and
Shannon Development into a new entity and to transfer Shannon Development’s
functions in relation to indigenous enterprise and foreign direct
investment (FDI) in the Shannon Free Zone to Enterprise Ireland and IDA
In June the Ministers announced the membership of the various groups tasked
with implementing the plans, and those groups are continuing that work.
Part of the reforms previously announced was to task IDA and Enterprise
Ireland with carrying out enterprise development functions in the Shannon
Free Zone, in addition to their existing enterprise development functions
throughout the Shannon region. In addition, the Agencies will develop a
plan for the delivery of enterprise supports in the Shannon region. This
will mean that indigenous and foreign businesses throughout the region will
have direct access to the comprehensive range of supports from the State
enterprise agencies, as well as to a dynamic international airport with
extensive property holdings.
In order to deliver this it is necessary to remove the restriction
contained in the Industrial Development Act 1986 on Enterprise Ireland and
IDA Ireland carrying out enterprise development functions in the Shannon
Free Zone (SFZ). Government yesterday agreed to the drafting of new
legislation to remove this restriction, which is expected to be published
before the end of 2012, with enactment by the Oireachtas thereafter.
Minister Bruton said:
“As previously stated, this Government is committed to securing a bright
future for the Shannon region. This week we have decided to make swift
legislative change to ensure that Enterprise Ireland and IDA can, as soon
as possible start delivering enterprise support services in the Shannon
Free Zone. This represents a step along the road to creating a new future
for Shannon. Much important work remains to be done, and that work is
continuing. I am convinced that with the right reforms properly
implemented, that a bright future can be delivered, and Government will
continue to work hard to ensure that happens”.