THE future of the Mid-West region is autonomous and artificial!
That’s according to the Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs Implementation Committee whose vision for the future development of the region is based on a strong collaborative ecosystem that’s at the cutting edge of new technologies.
Órlaith Borthwick, who is programme manager for the Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs, points to the fact that the region is leading the way in a number of emerging disruptive technologies including the autonomous vehicle – through the presence of global leaders such as Jaguar LandRover, Analog Devices, DELL, Intel and General Motors.
“While artificial intelligence will impact on all businesses in every sector, our regional opportunity is to ensure that we remain at the forefront in delivering innovations and talent in these growth areas,” she explained.
Stating that companies either innovate or evaporate, Minister of State for Trade and Employment Pat Breen told a recent meeting of the Jobs Implementation Committee that regional economies need to adopt the same philosophy to ensure their economic longevity.
Praising the levels of collaboration taking place across the public and private sectors in Limerick, Clare and Tipperary Minister Breen said: “The employment creation record of the Mid-West in recent years is a leading example to regions across the country in how public and private stakeholders can work collaboratively to deliver impactful change.
“Since the launch of the Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs, under the chairmanship of Barry O’Sullivan an additional 16,600 are in employment; in the first half of 2017 alone over 7,000 extra people were at work.”
“I was delighted to learn greater insights into what is working in the region, including recent successes in emerging growth sectors including the BioEconomy Foundation and Emerald Aero Cluster, both recently funded under the first round of the Enterprise Ireland Regional Enterprise Development Fund” he explained.
Launched in 2015, the Regional Action Plans for Jobs were recently subject to a ‘Refresh and Refocus’ by Minister Heather Humphreys who reiterated the government’s commitment to regional economic growth opportunities.
Commenting on the meeting with Minister Breen, Ms Borthwick said: “we are delighted that Minister Breen could join us to hear from our local authorities, our indigenous business base, our multinational industries, our higher education institutions and several others about our future vision for this region.
“The Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs has provided to framework to facilitate collaboration and cooperation; allowing a collective vision and set of strategic objectives to differentiate and lead the region into future growth. We are committed to working together for the betterment of our region and the people who live here,” she concluded.
This article is part of the Limerick Post special feature on Mid-West Industry, here you can read more articles and interviews from the feature.