Investment from the United States in Ireland during 2011 amounted to $30.5 billion. This is the second highest annual level recorded and a marked increase of nine percent on the investments during 2010.
The study estimates the economic output of US multinationals in Ireland to be $57.5bn, representing 26.5% of Ireland’s gross domestic product (GDP).
These figures were brought to light by a new report commissioned by the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland, entitled “The Irish – US Economic Relationship 2012”. The report was written by Wall Street economist and strategist, Joseph P Quinlan.
Speaking at the launch of the report, Quinlan said, “Despite the stiff headwinds, the ties that bind Ireland and the US together have generally become stronger, not weaker over the past year.
“Ireland has done an admirable job of differentiating itself from other financially impaired countries within Europe and this hasn’t gone unnoticed by the US investment community."
Peter O’Neill, president of the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland, told Business and Leadership, “The economic output of US multinationals in Ireland is estimated to be $57.5bn, accounting for 26.5pc of Ireland’s GDP. That is a remarkable metric of the value and importance of the economic links between our two countries.
“Ireland might not have much control over the ultimate end game of the sovereign debt crisis but we do have the wherewithal to determine our own economic future. We cannot rest on our laurels. We need to maintain and develop our favorable tax regime, robust R&D climate, government support for innovation and other pro business policies that set the country apart from our competitors in Europe.”
The relationship between the US and Ireland is described in the report as a two-way street, noting that Ireland’s foreign direct investment stock in the US dropped by around four percent, during 2011, to $25 billion. US based operations of Irish companies remain Ireland’s tenth largest employer of American workers, with 120,000 employees.
Between 2000 and 2009, US companies added 12,000 jobs to the Irish workforce and are currently employing 110,000 people in Ireland.
Quinlan added that if Ireland maintains its links with corporate America and makes budgetary adjustments, the country should emerge from this economic crisis “stronger and more competitive.”
The Chamber’s report also suggested that Ireland needs to improve their ties with developing countries such as Russia and Turkey. It states, “This is a massive opportunity for Ireland to capitalize upon.”