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The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr Charlie Flanagan T.D., will welcome 300 key influencers from 29 countries to the 2015 Global Irish Economic Forum taking place in Dublin Castle this Friday and Saturday (20-21 November). An important element in Ireland’s economic recovery, the Forum has generated job-creating initiatives, deepened links with the global Irish diaspora and helped to restore our international reputation.

Speaking in advance of this year’s Forum, Minister Flanagan said:

“As we move to secure and spread the benefits of our economic recovery, this year’s Forum will look to our future prosperity and focus on economic resilience. It also prioritises areas of high potential where the Global Irish Network can add real value through positioning Ireland’s International Financial Services globally, International Education and networking Ireland’s alumni, and entrepreneurship.

“Forum participants will be involved in a series of workshops with Irish companies across a range of sectors including Aviation, ICT, Financial Services, Manufacturing, Research and Innovation, Agri-Business and the Creative Economy. These sessions will explore ways of supporting Irish companies to scale and export, creating more jobs at home. They will combine expertise and local market knowledge of those from overseas, with leading business figures in industry at home, for the benefit of Irish SMEs.

“Regional meetings in Derry, Limerick, Laois and Galway on Thursday November 19th will build on the Regional Action Plans for Jobs and help spread the impact of the recovery, and the Forum, beyond Dublin.

“The Forum will also provide an opportunity to look at how Ireland might develop over the next 100 years and position itself to ensure ongoing prosperity and resilience for our people in the medium and longer term. I am looking forward to meeting with members of the Global Irish Network who bring great ideas and enthusiasm to each Economic Forum. I expect that this year’s Forum will be the best one yet.”

Many of the recommendations from previous Economic Forums have fed into successive Action Plans for Jobs and other Government strategies. Some of the most notable initiatives from previous Forums include Irish Design 2015, The Gathering 2013, Connect Ireland and the Global Irish Contacts Programme.

Also speaking this week Jimmy Deenihan T.D., Minister for Diaspora Affairs, said:

“The Global Irish Network and the Global Irish Economic Forum are key elements of our diaspora policy and have attracted the interest of Governments from all over the world.

We are very lucky to have such a committed diaspora and I am very much looking forward to a discussion at the Forum on “The Business of Diaspora” which will explore how working together with our diaspora can be beneficial for all concerned when it comes to doing business.”

The entire membership of the Global Irish Network has been invited to participate and contribute to the 2015 Global Irish Economic Forum. So as to improve the Forum’s gender balance, a number of internationally successful Irish women have been invited to attend this year’s Forum.

Irish business leaders and other economic stakeholders, together with the Government and the third level sector will comprise a further group of Forum participants.