A February date has been decided by former president Bill Clinton for an Irish economic forum in Manhattan, Irish Central has learned.

While he was in Ireland in October attending the Irish Diaspora Forum, Clinton gave a commitment to seek to help Ireland attract more foreign investment by hosting a gathering of business leaders who are committed to expanding overseas

“American companies now have two trillion dollars in cash reserves...You ought to target the companies that you know are rolling in dough.” he said at the time.

The date has just been decided and the forum will also be attended by Irish Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore.

The gathering will be small, about 20 top American CEOs according to sources. All are expected to be major CEOs and to have no involvement in Ireland at present.

“This will not be an Irish American gathering as such” said a source “It will be top American businessmen with no ties to Ireland we will be trying to persuade to think about investing there.”

The Clinton name is expected to make it much easier to attract top names. The former president will chair the event as well as give a keynote speech.