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Minister Flanagan highlights Ireland as an investment destination on official visit to Japan


Minister Flanagan highlights Ireland as an investment destination on official visit to Japan

Minister Flanagan met today (Tuesday) in Tokyo with Keidanren, the Japan Business Federation, and addressed a gathering of a Financial Services executives in which he promoted Ireland as a location for investment and outlined recent developments on Brexit.

Minister Flanagan said:

"There is a great interest in Ireland among Japanese businesses with an international presence in the wake of Brexit. Business leaders are eager to hear about Ireland's approach and future plans.

"Today I was pleased to address representatives of many of Japan's leading companies at the invitation of the Keidanren as well as a group of leading financial services executives at an event in Tokyo organised jointly by the Irish Embassy, IDA and Enterprise Ireland.

“I assured business leaders that while Brexit brings many challenges for Ireland, it also provides some opportunities for us as well. The Irish Government remains committed to the development of our business sector and business environment. I urged Japanese investors to consider Ireland as a location for suitable investments in the EU.

"I further reassured them that Ireland’s commitment to the EU is fundamental. Our EU membership remains central to the success of our open, competitive economy. We value being part of a Union with other like-minded democracies which share our values and our interests. This will not change.”

On Ireland’s international financial services strategy, IFS2020, the Minister told an influential audience of financial services executives:

“Our strategy is to grow the international financial services sector in Ireland by 30% between 2015 and 2020. We want to place ourselves firmly at the cutting edge of financial services innovation.

"We are doing this by positioning Ireland as a leading location for specialist international financial services, including in areas like asset management and servicing, insurance, banking, securities, aircraft leasing and FinTech.

"Here in Tokyo, we have an Ireland House, which brings together our state agencies and our Embassy team under the leadership of our Ambassador, Anne Barrington. I can assure you that Ireland House is open for business and ready to work with you at any time to develop opportunities in Ireland.”

Japan is Ireland's is the world's third largest economy and Ireland's largest source of FDI in Asia. 79 Japanese companies support over 4,000 jobs in Ireland. Our bilateral trade with Japan totalled €9.8 billion in 2015.

Minister Flanagan also delivered a key note address in the afternoon at an event organised by the Japan Institute of International Affairs entitled The EU managing Brexit and other Challenges: Ireland’s Perspective.

Speaking to an audience comprising members of the diplomatic community, academics, business leaders and the members of the Japanese media, the Minister said:

“Brexit and uncertainty in the world’s trading system pose significant challenges to both Ireland, the European Union and Japan. These challenges make it all the more important for like-minded countries such as Ireland and Japan to speak with one voice. We have to defend free and fair trade within a system of transparent and justiciable rules.

"It is in this vein that I welcome the recent progress on the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement, and I know Minister Kishida shares my hope for a speedy conclusion of the negotiations. This agreement presents an opportunity for the EU and Japan to set the terms for global trade in the twenty-first century and to secure continued prosperity for our people.”

Minister Flanagan is in Japan at the invitation of the Japanese government. Tomorrow (Wednesday) he will meet his Japanese counterpart, Minister Kishida.

Press Office
28 February 2017