Chamber celebrates Independence Day

  • Release Date: 04/07/2019
04 Jul 2019: The American Chamber of Commerce Ireland today celebrated 243 years of US independence at their annual 4th of July lunch at the Clayton Hotel, on Burlington Road.
Minister for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD, and newly appointed US Ambassador to Ireland, Edward F Crawford, were special guest of honour at the event, which was attended by six hundred members of the Ireland-US business community.
Speaking about Ireland’s mutually successful relationship with the US, Mark Gantly, President of the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland, highlighted how Ireland now accounts for over 12.6% of all US investment with over 700 US companies employing over 155,000 people directly and a further 100,000 indirectly. This picture is complemented by Irish companies who are directly employing 100,000 people right across every State in the US. 
While welcoming this tremendous successes, Mark Gantly called for an immediate full and frank conversation about issues that must be addressed in order for Ireland to remain competitive in a fast changing global business environment, “Multinationals are becoming increasingly concerned about how to attract and retain talented individuals from abroad to live and work here. Ireland is increasingly scored on quality of life factors where we must measure up to against competing international destinations. There is a consensus that physical and digital infrastructure, housing, and importantly solving the uncertainties and bottlenecks in our planning system, must not slip from the agenda.” 
Mr Gantly went on to express the Chamber’s support for Project Ireland 2040 and the Taoiseach’s vision that Ireland will double its global footprint by 2025, “We fully support the Taoiseach’s vision that Ireland will double its global footprint by 2025. This includes significant increased investment for our key investment agencies – Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland.”
In his speech the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland President also emphasised about the importance the US-Irish relationship in the context of Brexit and its implications for this island. “We know that Ireland must use its voice now more than ever in the transatlantic relationship. If we can focus our energies and get on with the specifics we can control, I am confident we will continue to remain a global destination of choice for US investment for the next half century.”
Addressing the assembled members of the Ireland-US business community at the Independence Day lunch, Minister of Finance and Public Expenditure & Reform Paschal Donohoe said, “It’s a great pleasure to be able to mark Independence Day with so many leaders of US owned companies based here. I am delighted that Ireland continues to be a leading location of choice for US companies looking to base international operations here. It speaks to the potential of the Irish people and the nation as a competitive, open, and business friendly environment, which has been underpinned by consistent investment by governments down through the years.
Global trade and investment depends on certainty. Ireland has also been successful for a long time because it has gained an international reputation as a certain and stable legislative environment, and a positive location for investment decisions to be made. As a small open economy, Ireland is now taking action and working at an international level for a stable and consensus-based international tax framework, so that our hard-won reputation, and the achievements of the recent past, are future proofed.”
At the annual lunch it was confirmed that Carin Bryans, Vice President of the Chamber, will become the organisation’s President in 2020, while board member Gareth Lambe will hold the Presidency in 2021. It was also announced that  Liz Cunningham, Tax Director at Google Ireland, Paul Farrell, IBM Country General Manager, Brian Farrell, Vice President of tax at Indeed, and Paul Sheahan, Global Manufacturing Projects Manager at Baker Hughes - a GE Company, have all been appointed to the board of the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland.