Chamber hosts inaugural US-Ireland Business Conference

  • Release Date: 07/03/2019
  • US investment in Ireland continues to increase year on year
  • Over 700 US companies now employing 155,000 people directly in Ireland, with an additional 100,000 employed in supporting businesses
  • 12.6% of investment into the EU is in Ireland
  • American Chamber iReach survey among the general public showed that 84% of respondents believe US companies will continue to invest here despite Brexit
  • 61% of respondents are confident or very confident about Ireland’s role as an inward investment destination despite global trade tensions
Thursday, 7 March 2019:  The American Chamber of Commerce Ireland today hosted its inaugural ‘US Ireland Business Conference – At the Heart of the Transatlantic Economy’.  Incoming President of the American Chamber Mark Gantly welcomed guest of honour, An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to the event, which also featured the launch of the 2019 US Ireland Business Report with an economic chapter by Wall Street economist Joseph Quinlan which highlights the continuing growth and strength of the Irish US business relationship. 

The American Chamber US Ireland Business Conference will explore a number of the themes and challenges that are central to Ireland’s continued success in the battle for US FDI, including; Ireland – an island of opportunity at the centre of the world; the State of Play – Two Way Investment, Trade Relations and the current Geo Political Climate; Ireland – an island of innovation at the heart of the transatlantic relationship; Regulating for a Digital Economy – Trust and Security, and much more.  

Apart from an address by An Taoiseach, guest speakers will include Andrew McDowell, VP, European Investment Bank; Majorie Chorlins, VP, US Chamber of Commerce; leaders from a number of US multinationals; Data Protection Commissioner Helen Dixon. The event will close with an address by Irish Ambassador to the US, Dan Mulhall, and the Acting US Ambassador to Ireland, Reece Smyth.

Speaking at the conference, An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, T.D., said “Each and every week, the flow of trade between the US and Ireland is over €2 billion. Irish businesses employ well over 100,000 Americans across all sectors of the US economy and this investment is increasing year on year.  This, of course, mirrors what we in Ireland have experienced. 

“The cumulative impact of decades of American investment in Ireland has been central to our emergence as a dynamic, competitive, open economy.  Ireland is now a location of choice for more than 760 US companies, which among them directly employ upwards of 160,000 people here. I believe the economic relationship between Ireland and the United States is resilient, and full of promise for the future.”
Speaking about the US Ireland Business Report, which will also be launched in the US during the Chamber’s annual programme of engagements for St Patrick’s Day, the President of the American Chamber, Mark Gantly, said “Our US Ireland Business Report shows that US direct investment stock in Ireland totalled a record $ 446 bn in 2017, a 14 % increase from the prior year. And figures from the Bureau of Economic Analysis show that Ireland’s share of US investment stock in Europe was 12.6%.  On the back of those figures, it’s fair to say that the transatlantic business relationship continues to deliver for the Irish economy.”

“Despite Brexit, the Irish public also seem to agree. 84% of respondents to an iReach survey for the American Chamber conducted among the general public last week said they believe US companies will continue to invest despite the UK’s departure from the EU. 61% are confident or very confident about Ireland’s role as an inward investment destination despite other global trade tensions. The question for this conference is therefore about the future.” said Mark Gantly, “How can Ireland make a global Impact through Talent, Innovation and Inclusivity that will future proof us for the years ahead? This is what is driving AmCham Ireland’s mission over the next three years as we seek to build Ireland’s transatlantic business relationships through networking and advocacy with purpose. 

One of the initiatives which the American Chamber will launch today is AmCham’s Mandate Leader Master-Class Programme with the objective of sharing expertise from across the membership to support the current cohort of leaders to strengthen and expand their mandates here in Ireland.  Whether it’s working on the relationship between the subsidiary and corporate, strategic influence and impact; succeeding within a global organisation; or specific issues around tax and R&D - this masterclass programme will be open to all site leads.”