Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD and Minister of State for Employment and Small Business Pat Breen TD are today launching a new Regional Enterprise Development Fund of up to €60m.
This competitive funding has been provided by the Department of Jobs in conjunction with Enterprise Ireland and is a key action to support the Regional Action Plan for Jobs and the Action Plan for Rural Development.
The Fund is aimed at accelerating economic recovery in every part of the country by delivering on the potential of local and regional enterprise strengths. The Fund will support significant collaborative regional initiatives to build on specific industry sectoral strengths and improve enterprise capability, thereby driving job creation.
Under a competitive process, Enterprise Ireland is now seeking applications for funding under four streams with varying investment levels:
1. Major Change Projects - €2m up to €5m per project,
2. Regionally Significant Projects - €250,000 up to €2m per project,
3. Local & Community Enterprise Development Projects - €50,000 up to €250,000 per project,
4. Industry Clusters - €50,000 up to €250,000 per project.
Launching the Fund, Jobs Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor said, “The Regional Action Plans aim to ensure that regional Ireland gets its fair share of economic growth and investment. I want to see collaborative projects that will boost the regions by supporting enterprise and creating jobs. Through this fund, I am delighted to be backing local stakeholders to drive their own futures by putting forward their own innovative proposals to deliver sustainable employment.”
Also speaking at the launch, Minister of State for Employment and Small Business Pat Breen TD said, “Unlocking opportunity in regional Ireland is essential to underpin the future performance of our indigenous companies who are making a huge contribution to the recovery. We know that a one-size-fits-all approach to developing regions won’t work. We want to invest in the unique strengths of each region in the drive to maximise employment and value add to the Irish economy.”
Minister of State for Skills and Training John Halligan TD said, “This fund will help to ensure the benefits of our growing economy are felt in every region. Harnessing the talent of people in the regions, linking enterprises to the third level sector, keeping entrepreneurs connected, supporting innovation, and putting in place various development programmes for our companies is something we must keep working on.”
CEO of Enterprise Ireland Julie Sinnamon said, “Supporting Enterprise development is a key role of Enterprise Ireland. This fund will provide an important infrastructural mechanism to drive growth in developing enterprise in every region. The fund will also support the development of industry clusters which will facilitate knowledge transfer, innovation and collaboration among organisations. These are important drivers of enterprise growth and job creation, and we look forward to supporting more regionally-based companies through this initiative.”
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