Dáil Éireann - Volume 592 - 16 November, 2004
Written Answers. - Job Creation.
Ms Burton Ms Burton
94. Ms Burton asked the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the proposals he has to attract alternative employment to Westport, County Mayo, in regard to his statement of 1 November 2004 regarding the announcement of 325 job losses at a company (details supplied) in County Mayo in the area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28328/04]
Mr. Kenny Mr. Kenny
145. Mr. Kenny asked the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the steps he intends to take to secure alternative employment in the jobs in Westport, County Mayo following the closure of a plant (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28360/04]
Mr. Martin Mr. Martin
Mr. Martin: I propose to take Questions Nos. 94 and 145 together.
The announcement by Allergan of the proposed job losses in Westport is a major blow to the workers affected and their families. My thoughts are with the workers and the families of the workers who will lose their jobs. I am conscious too of the adverse affects of such a closure, socially and economically, on the surrounding area. I note that the company has stated that despite these job losses, it is confident that it will be able to ensure the future success of the West port facility with the introduction of further products for manufacture in the plant. I welcome this commitment.
I assure the Deputies that every effort will be made by FÁS and the State development agencies to find alternative employment for those people who will be made redundant. FÁS has contacted the company and is available to offer its full range of support services to those who will lose their jobs. These include top level agreement with the company on responsibilities and actions; intensive interviews, individually and-or in groups, with affected workers, which would outline the range of supports and services available; and preparation of a skills analysis report by FÁS, based on identified workers’ needs and local opportunities.
In addition, FÁS will refer workers to training courses or other options. The agency will establish special or customised training courses where necessary and will provide ongoing support and action to keep redundant workers in touch with the labour market. Enterprise Ireland has already indicated the availability of its staff to visit the company for discussions in relation to supporting entrepreneurship and potential start ups for workers being made redundant.
IDA Ireland continues to actively promote the Westport region to potential investors from a variety of sectors, including manufacturing and international services, through its network of overseas offices and project divisions, with every effort being made to secure new investments for the area. In addition to targeting potential new projects, IDA Ireland continues to work with the existing base of companies in the region with a view to supporting such companies with potential expansions and diversification of activities. Enterprise Ireland also continues to work with its client companies in Westport and in County Mayo to assist them grow their sales and exports and improve innovation to enable them to compete on world markets and encourages companies to adopt new technologies to add value to their products and services.
To continue to improve its attractiveness as a location for inward investment, IDA Ireland has acquired 37 acres from Mayo County Council in Westport and plans to develop the site into a business and technology park. Phase one of the site development will involve an IDA investment of approximately €3 million and a contractor has been appointed to go on site early this month. The agency has completed development of a new business and technology park on a 16 acre site in Castlebar, and has secured advance planning permission for the construction of three, 19,500 sq.ft. privately financed technology buildings on the park. At Ballina, IDA is in negotiation with Mayo County Council for the purchase of 27 acres on the Sligo Road for the development of a business and technology park, which will be a key addition to the infrastructure of north Mayo.
 The State development agencies are fully committed to ensuring an equal distribution of job creation opportunities and to encouraging the establishment of industry in the regions, in particular, the Border, midlands and west, BMW, region, which includes Westport. The State development agencies, under the auspices of my Department, will continue to work closely together and with local interests in promoting Westport and County Mayo for additional investment and job creation.
Question No. 95 answered with Question No. 92.
Question No. 96 answered with Question No. 76.
Dáil Éireann 592 Written Answers. Job Creation.