AmCham Speaking Engagements
The American Chamber has been involved with a number of significant industry events in recent months, which have been used to advance the policies of the Chamber's membership by promoting it to a wider group of stakeholders.
Lemass International Forum
The forum, which examined "The Factory of the Future: the Role of Manufacturing in Ireland's Economic Recovery", was addressed by three President's of the American Chamber of Commerce, who all concurred that as Ireland strives for export led growth, we must ensure that we remain an attractive location for high end manufacturing operations.
Lionel Alexander, current President of the Chamber said: "US companies export over €90 billion worth of products from Ireland to the rest of the world. If Ireland isn't a compelling location for companies to conduct their manufacturing, these products will be produced elsewhere and the benefits that accrue in terms of employment, the contribution to Ireland's tax take and the development of innovation will be lost".
Dr. Paul Duffy, Vice President Operations, Pfizer Ireland Pharmaceuticals Ltd (and 2009 President of the American Chamber) added: "Manufacturing needs to be treated as a core element of the SMART Economy. But if we are to harness its potential to deliver economic and societal change then we need to move towards greater collaboration and convergence across the entire value chain."
Ireland has its advantages when competing for these advanced manufacturing projects, according to Jim O'Hara, General Manager, Intel Ireland (and 2007 President of the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland). "We have an existing base of manufacturing upon which to capitalise on; a talented workforce and a strong track record for results."
The Lemass International Forum which was established to recognise the inspiration and achievements of Sean Lemass (Taoiseach from 1959-1966), and to promote innovative ways of thinking about the future and meeting current challenges. Other participants in the conference included Conor Lenihan T.D., Minister for Science Technology & Innovation, Barry O'Leary Chief Executive of IDA Ireland, and the Forum's patron T.K. Whittaker who served as secretary of the Department of Finance under Lemass.
Left: Dr. Paul Duffy, Lionel Alexander, Jim O'Hara
Right: Lionel Alexander, Dr. T.K. Whitaker, Jim O'Hara
Engineers Ireland CPD Symposium
Lionel Alexander told the Engineers Ireland CPD Symposium that regulating the engineering industry will create the opportunity to raise the standards and position the Irish engineering community to compete at a global level for investment. He was speaking as Chamber member Boston Scientific was named the overall Engineers Ireland CPD Company of the Year 2010.
The Awards were presented by the Tánaiste and Minister for Education & Skills, Mary Coughlan TD.
Lionel Alexander stressed the critical importance for Ireland to prioritize investments to enable our future education. Ireland cannot afford to fall behind OECD nations in education standards. Lionel Alexander called for the of the introduction of regulation of engineering to attract foreign direct investment and our transition to a Smart Economy cited Canada and Australia as examples of countries that had prospered hugely from regulation.
Also Addressed was the IBEC HR Leadership Summit