Thomas Byrne, a Fianna Fail TD for Meath East, was on RTE's Frontline on the 22nd February 2010 discussing big ideas to help young people into employment.
1hr : 03 mins 50 secs
Dylan Collins, the CEO of Jolt Online Gaming and a member of the ICSC Taskforce re-iterated a proposition mentioned at the taskforce meetings of a 0% tax rate for virtual goods as an incentive for gaming companies to locate in Ireland.
"The international content services centre will be worked on through the digital hub in liaison with the IDA. They will be working hard to see in what way we can bring that particular project forward. It is part of a number of projects concerned with identifying new areas, including Internet technologies, internationally-traded services, the green-clean tech area and the food industry. In such areas, the IDA and Enterprise Ireland can prepare a jobs strategy even in the context of this year when we expect unemployment to peak, although jobs will still be created. The churning of jobs between losses and gains continues. There is no doubt that the public finance position we are bringing forward is the best way, and a prerequisite for ensuring that we get more jobs into the economy. In that manner, these projects can obtain support and be brought from concept to fruition."
"The IDA is leading that project and is working with the digital hub. IDA personnel are working on that matter and when it emerges, if they can bring forward a proposal for consideration by the board, it will of course obtain budgetary support though the IDA’s grant in aid and all the other facilities we have available to assist enterprise supports. We are providing over €200 million this year for enterprise supports. When a mature project is brought before it, the board will consider it in the normal way. It is not a question of picking something out of the air and deciding “Here’s the international content services centre”. One must sit down and work with partners to see in what way one can bring forward experts in this area, in addition to the expertise we have identified at home ourselves. It is not a question of sitting back on any of these projects.
The work of seeking new opportunities for the IFSC is ongoing. As regards all areas of activity, Enterprise Ireland and the IDA are devising strategies based on the new situation we are in, including identifying the areas I have just mentioned. The IDA has been looking at high-level manufacturing and pharmaceuticals - areas with which we are all acquainted and where we have some strengths. Despite worldwide foreign direct investment being down by 30%, it was up 4% here last year, which was the worst year we ever had."
We are very close to having a 'mature project" to bring to IDA so I hope to be back with positive news shortly.