Dáil Éireann - Volume 412 - 14 November, 1991
Written Answers. - Shannon Estuary Industrial Promotion.
Mr. Finucane Mr. Finucane
24. Mr. Finucane asked the Minister for Industry and Commerce the current status of the special strategy adopted for the promotion of the Shannon Estuary; and whether any industrial projects are envisaged in the near future as a result of this promotion.
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Malley) Desmond J. O'Malley
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Malley): An intensive programme to promote the Shannon Estuary as a location for large-scale industry was undertaken by SFADCo, in conjunction with the IDA, in the second half of 1990.  It was aimed at selected major companies of the type most likely to bring worthwhile economic benefit to the area, i.e. companies operating globally which could make use of the significant natural attributes and facilities of the deep-water estuary while satisfying the highest environmental standards.
During 1990, new promotional brochures and other detailed marketing briefs on the estuary were prepared. By the end of 1990, detailed site profiles had been prepared for a number of locations on the estuary.
Following extensive preliminary research on potential clients, detailed  presentations were made by both the IDA and SFADCo to the more promising potentially interested companies in North America towards the end of 1990. This campaign was extended into 1991 and is being widened to include the Far East and other markets. To date a total of 20 priority companies have been visited in the US and ten in the Far East.
The initial response on the part of the companies approached was encouraging in that it confirmed that an estuary location was an attractive investment proposition for certain types of suitable major industries. Indeed, the estuary is now an essential stop-over on all visits to Ireland by large-scale industrial itineraries and 15 of these have looked at the estuary in the past year. However, the attraction of this kind of large-scale investment is a “long haul” effort, with lengthy lead-in ties before final investment decisions are made by promoters. It will be necessary therefore for both the IDA and Shannon Development to continue to promote the estuary in an intensive way over a long period to achieve results.
I would have to point out, however, that location decisions are ultimately made by the project promoter and that the national and international climate for this type of investment is highly competitive at the moment. These decisions are particularly influenced by communications and the availability of infrastructure and, in this respect, the estuary must be promoted against the inducements of highly developed sites in alternative locations.
Nonetheless I would be confident that we will succeed in securing at least one major project for the estuary in the near future.
Dáil Éireann 412 Written Answers. Shannon Estuary Industrial Promotion.