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Minister Costello urges Irish companies to focus on winning consulting contracts

Minister of State for Trade and Development, Joe Costello, T.D., today urged Irish companies to focus on winning a greater share of the consulting contracts for large development programmes in Africa and the developing world.

Speaking at a Consulting Ireland event hosted by Enterprise Ireland in Dublin today, Minister Costello said:

“We know that Ireland boasts many of the finest companies specialising in the technical areas where development funding is directed. The EU alone issued contracts worth €975 billion in this area over the past six years. Yet, Consulting Ireland has found that we are not winning a fair proportion of these international contracts.

Denmark, with a similar sized population to Ireland, wins almost ten times more consultancies. One potential explanation is that small Danish companies are more likely to cluster into large-scale companies in order to achieve economies-of-scale. This is something which the companies present today should consider seriously.

Earlier this month, I approved funding to support an IBEC study on clustering within the engineering sector with a view to winning more business in Africa. Clustering is an important strategy to assist Irish companies and has been highlighted by a number of submissions to the Review of the Irish Aid White Paper.”

Minister Costello stressed that the network of Embassies and Enterprise Ireland Offices around the world is ready to assist Irish companies looking to win contracts. He urged companies to make use of this resource.