Skip to comments.A St. Patrick's Day Message: Ireland Is Not Greece
Posted on 03/16/2012 5:57:11 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
As large parts of the world turn green to celebrate St. Patricks Day, the Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has been flying the green, white and gold flag on a charm offensive around the world.
Kenny is packing in trips to London, China and New York within a couple of weeks in an effort to carry forward the countrys gradual return to economic health, which has been based largely on attracting foreign investment. He opens the New York Stock Exchange on Monday, after visiting at the White House over the weekend.
This is a very important push for Ireland, Irish businessman Barry Maloney, founder and general partner at venture capital firm Balderton Capital, told CNBC.
After the highs of the Celtic Tiger years, Ireland experienced the humiliating low of an 85 billion euro (then $113 billion) bailout by the troika of the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Union in late 2010.
Since then, the nation has emerged as a poster boy for austerityalthough critics point out that unemployment still stands at 14 percent, emigration is rising as recent graduates leave, and internal growth has ground to a halt.
Still, the early adoption of austerity measures, and a 17 percent increase in foreign direct investment last year, have helped Ireland improve its competitiveness in a way other stricken euro zone countries, such as Greece, have not. Unit labor costsonce second only to Denmark in the EUare down, and the 12.5 percent corporation tax rate, one of the lowest in Europe, is also helping to attract companies.
Big names such as Google, Twitter, and LinkedIn have arrived, and other multinationals including PayPal, Forest Labs and Pfizer are expanding their operations.
(Excerpt) Read more at cnbc.com ...
Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, when asked why the internet giant was opening an office in Dublin in 2011, said: Our decision has nothing to do with the Irish economy and everything to do with the Irish workforce.
WHAT MAKES IRELAND DIFFERENT FROM THE OTHER PIGS:
Workforce is well-educated, English-speaking, and has had enough of a scare that its prepared to work hard for less rather than get on a plane to Boston.
Compared to other locations, the resilience and the spirit of getting on with things helps.
The Irish flag is green, representing Catholics, orange, representing Protestants and white representing the desired peace between them.
Green, white and GOLD? Looks ORANGE to me.
My Western Isles Scottish ancestors found refuge from English rope in Donegal and the spelling of the name changed to a softened and smoother version of the clipped Scots Gaelic original. Then some of them found their way to America a few decades before the Great Famine migration. I have no idea when they became Protestants but they did. In spite of that, we have always identified our family origins as Irish with plenty of Patricks and a few Seans in the line. And when Rangers play Celtic I root for the fellows in the green stripe jerseys. So Happy St. Patrick's day to all, Green and Orange alike!
I love Ireland... went there in 1999 and very much would like to go back.
Getting on a plane to Boston makes sense only when a Kennedy is empowered to feather your bed for you.
My uncle went to Ireland and was horrified by the Two Euro stores (basically Dollar Tree except each item set you back by close to three bucks)