Technology Ireland launches General Election Manifesto
Tuesday, 28 January 2020Technology Ireland, the Ibec group that represents the sector, today released its general election manifesto (see attached), focusing on education and skills, infrastructure and an appeal for the establishment of a new Minister of State dedicated solely to Digital Affairs in the Department of An Taoiseach.
Commenting, Una Fitzpatrick, Director of Technology Ireland, said: “The technology sector has been a huge success story for Ireland. The digitally intensive sector now employs over 210,000 people and accounts for 13% of Ireland’s GDP and those figures continue to grow. In all, nine out of 10 global software, nine out of 10 US technology and all of the top 10 born-on-internet companies have their EU HQs in Ireland.
“Of course, it is not just a story about multinationals. We have a thriving indigenous tech sector also. When you have an ecosystem that encourages innovation and digitalisation it provides an opportunity for all companies to thrive.
“With regard to education & skills, there have been some excellent roadmaps produced such as the ICT Skills Action Plan and the STEM Education Review. It is crucial though that these plans are acted on.
“Other areas that affect us are Ireland’s infrastructure capacity challenges. Sadly, the housing shortage is evident to all of us and has become a constraint in terms of attracting new investment and encouraging existing companies to expand. It is difficult to attract staff when rents are so high. It is also essential that our electrical and water infrastructure keeps pace with wider economic growth.
“The overriding concern for the technology sector is to establish a Minister of State dedicated solely to Digital Affairs in the Department of An Taoiseach. If we had a Minister that could concentrate solely on digital affairs with the power to reach across departments then a lot of our other needs would be met. Digitalisation is not just about the technology sector anymore. The reality is that increasingly every company and organisation is becoming a digital organisation to some extent. It is important that we have someone at the heart of government to drive the changes we need to make that ongoing digital transformation successfully.”