Focus on Ireland

Focus On Ireland

Home to a burgeoning economy with strong business ambitions and an attractive trade environment for UK companies makes Ireland an ideal place for UK businesses looking to go global for the first time.

The European Commission predicts the country’s economy to become Europe’s fastest growing this year, expecting it to rise by 4.9%. However, the Commission also issued some caution over future economic growth due to such factors as a deceleration in demand from trading partners due to the country’s status as an open economy.

More and more global companies are looking to Ireland as a base to set up operations in order to reach a European market of approximately 500 million consumers. According to the TMF Group’s figures, over 1,000 overseas companies operate in Ireland, employing around 150,000 of the country’s 1.9 million workforce.

The nation is also a favoured by some of the world’s most influential firms to use as their European headquarters, including Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Facebook, amongst hundreds of others, due to factors such as generous tax rates.

The UK’s fifth largest export market and importer of more UK goods and services than any other country, Ireland is ideal for a UK business looking to go global for the first time.

Aside from the shared language, time zone, and a similar legal and regulatory set-up, other benefits for UK companies include strong transport links, an open economy, and a strong trade relationship between the two nations; the Department for International Trade notes that £18.37 billion of UK goods were exported to Ireland in 2014.

The DIT list the main exports (by value) as being:
• Fuel and lubricants
• Manufactured articles
• Machinery
• Transport
• Food and live animals
• Chemicals

The DIT also list the top 10 UK export categories to Ireland in 2014 as being:
• Petroleum products and related materials
• Miscellaneous manufactured articles
• Gas, natural and manufactured
• Articles of apparel and clothing accessories
• Essential oils and perfume materials
• Road vehicles
• Medicinal and pharmaceutical products
• Manufactures of metals
• Electrical machinery, appliances and electrical parts
• Office machines and automatic data-processing machines