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96% of measures delivered under first Action Plan for Jobs progress report - Taoiseach, Tánaiste, Minister Bruton

80 out of 83 measures scheduled in the Action Plan for Jobs to be delivered in the first quarter of 2012 have been implemented, the Taoiseach, the Tánaiste and the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation announced today (Friday).

The measures delivered to date include:

Launch of the “Succeed in Ireland” initiative, aimed at delivering at least 5,000 jobs in five years

Launch of a new Potential Exporters Division in Enterprise Ireland, targeting 1,800 new exporting companies

Appointment of an operator and publication of legislation for the €150million Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme

Design and launch of the new €150million Development Capital Scheme, aimed at addressing a funding gap for mid-sized, high-growth companies

Issue of a global second call under Innovation Fund Ireland worth more than €60million, to target investment in high-growth technology companies

Allocation of €20 million to a new Education and Training Fund

Extension and simplification of the employer PRSI exemption scheme

Enactment of the Finance Bill, giving effect to several pro-jobs measures

Launch and advertising of a new round of the Sports Capital Programme with a €30 million fund

Creation of a Register of Advocates for new FDI in Ireland from among the diaspora – 130 Advocates included

Making the announcement today, the Taoiseach said:

“On the day the Action Plan was launched I said that I would ensure that Government works hard to deliver on its ambition. We have focussed on implementation from day one, and will continue to do so. Today’s report confirms that Government is delivering on its commitments under the Action Plan with 96% of planned measures delivered on time and real progress on improving the environment for job-creation.

This is just the first step in an annual plan to help rebuild our economy. In the next three months we will build on actions rolled out to date and aim to deliver another 77 measures to support job creation with initiatives on business costs, broadband, procurement, red tape, industry-led innovation and much more.”

The Tánaiste said:

“Economic Recovery is the core objective of this Government. We are working hard, and we are working to a plan.There is no magic bullet – what we have to do is keep our focus on the task at hand, and do the hard work, day by day. We have a clear plan, and a vision of what we want to achieve, but we get there by grinding out the hard work of reform and change.Today’s report on the implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs is a clear example of that. There were 83 actions identified for completion in Quarter 1 – of these 80 have been completed. It’s that kind of detailed work that we need to do, and which we have to drive ahead with, across government”.

Minister Bruton said:

“When we as a Government launched our plan for jobs and growth earlier this year, we said very clearly that there was no ‘big bang’ solution to the jobs crisis, and that what was needed was determined, step-by-step implementation of our plan to rebuild the economy and create jobs. Our plan comprises a wide range of over 270 actions to be implemented by 15 Government Departments and 36 Agencies, to make it easier for businesses across a range of sectors to start up, expand, and create employment – and it is only by determined implementation that we will achieve our goals.

“Today’s announcement shows that we are making solid progress, and have already implemented a number of measures which will make a practical difference in making it easier for businesses to grow and create jobs. However we have a long way to go and the challenge now is to ensure that we continue the step-by-step process of rebuilding the economy so that we can achieve the levels of jobs and growth we so badly need”.

The Progress Report can be found here:

Action Plan for Jobs 2012 First Progress Report

NOTES FOR EDITORS

The Action Plan for Jobs contains over 270 actions, broken down into over 600 discrete measures to be delivered in 2012. Of these, 83 measures were targeted for delivery in Q1 2012. Among the 80 measures delivered are:

The launch of the new Potential Exporters Division in Enterprise Ireland to support more indigenous companies to trade in foreign markets, and a new programme of supports, “Get Export Ready” tailored specifically for pre-export and early stage exporting companies (Action 3.10)

Issuing of a new call under the Springboard programme for higher education courses that are aligned with areas of future skills needs (Action 1.34)

The delivery of the Diaspora job finder’s fee scheme Succeed in Ireland aimed at creating 5,000 jobs within five years by targeting international companies and business people, who would otherwise not be reached by the State enterprise Agencies (Action 5.6)

Approval by Government of the establishment of a new structure to support micro enterprise based on the creation of a Micro Enterprise and Small Business Division in Enterprise Ireland, the creation of a network of “one-stop-shop” micro enterprise support offices in Local Authority offices and the establishment of a Working Group to progress delivery (Action 2.2)

Design and launch of a new Development Capital Scheme, aimed at addressing a funding gap for mid-sized, high-growth, indigenous companies with significant prospects for jobs and export growth (Action 3.29)

Publication of legislation to provide for the targeted Partial Credit Guarantee scheme, and award of a preliminary contract for an operator of the scheme (Action 3.30)

Finalisation of the delivery structure for the Microfinance Fund.

The preparation and roll-out of a schedule of sector specific Trade Missions and market evaluation Missions that reflect the priority markets identified in the Trade Strategy, including at least 15 Minister-led Missions during the year (Action 3.12)

Publication of legislation to reform statutory wage setting mechanisms (Action 1.12)

Issuing of a global second call under Innovation Fund Ireland to top venture capitalists to signal their interest in establishing a presence in Ireland, with investment by Government of more than €60 million in venture capital funds which establish a presence in Ireland (Action 3.31)

Simplification and extension of the Employer Job (PRSI) Incentive Scheme, which exempts employers from liability to pay their share of PRSI for certain employees (Actions 1.13 and 3.46)

Establishment of a new Enterprise Ireland / IDA Ireland Senior Management Team to drive effective collaboration on key priorities (Actions 3.2, 4.1 and 5.11)

Creation of an inter-agency, inter-Departmental Project Team to develop a demonstrator project for the proposed Health Innovation Hub by the end of Q2. This team has a new Chairman, has met to plan a work programmes and involves representatives from DJEI, DoH, HSE, IDA, EI, SFI. 9 (Action 7.2.1)

Implementation of the employment and enterprise support measures outlined in Budget 2012, namely the improved R&D Tax Credit regime, extension of the corporation tax exemption for new businesses, a Foreign Earnings Deduction to support the export drive to fast-growing markets, sector specific supports, and the Special Assignee Relief Programme. (Actions 1.7, 2.1, 3.11, 5.7 and 5.8)

Announcement of the date of commencement of the two new immigration programmes aimed at stimulating investment and job creation in Ireland- the Immigrant Investor Programme and the Start-up Entrepreneur Programme (Actions 4.7 and 5.12)

The launch and advertising of a new round of the Sports Capital Programme with a €30 million fund (Action 6.10)

The launch of The Gathering 2013, the largest tourism event ever planned for Ireland, aimed at bringing 325,000 extra visitors here in 2013 (Action 7.8.6)

Publication of the report of the Research Prioritisation Steering Group and adoption of the recommendations of the National Research Prioritisation Exercise as a whole of Government policy goal (Action 1.1)

Allocation of €20 million to a new Education and Training Fund (Action 1.34)

Marketplace International 2012 was launched. This one-day strategic business development event involved scheduled meetings between 170 food and drink companies and over 500 buyers from 28 countries to help strengthen agri-food businesses (Action 7.4.14)

The three measures which have been delayed are:

Action 2.11: Launch a new Women in Business Start-Up drive

Quarter 1 commitment: design and launch a promotional drive for women with an emphasis on start-ups (Enterprise Ireland)

Three focus groups were held in March 2012 to assist in the design phase, which is now expected to conclude in June 2012, with subsequent launch.

Action 3.4: Support industry-led clustering in key areas of export opportunity, based on new models, industry proposals, and newly developed niche market strategies.

Quarter 1 Commitment: Develop and approach and a programme to support industry-led clustering, taking account of best practice and industry views (DJEI/Forfas/EI/Industry)

The design of the programme will be completed in Q2, and the roll-out of the programme remains on course for Q3 as targeted in the Action Plan for Jobs.

Action 7.6.1: Progress the Cloud Computing Strategy for the Public Service - Centre for Management and Organisational Development to bring the strategy to Government for consideration and approval. (D/PER / CMOD)

This Strategy is currently in development. Government approval is expected to be sought early in Q2.

ENDS

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