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Irish Minister Thomas Byrne Discussed The Mutually Beneficial Texas-Ireland Relationship

The Texas State Chamber was honored to have Irish Minister Thomas Byrne, T.D. give remarks on the mutual economic benefits of the Texas-Ireland relationship.

Minister Thomas Byrne is the Minister of State at the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media. He was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 2007 and has served the people of Meath East in Dáil Éireann as TD since the 2016 general election.

Minister Byrne touted Ireland as a great destination for U.S. businesses to expand. Ireland is a stable democracy with the second highest quality of life in the world. The nation is home to the top finance companies and the top pharmaceutical companies. With the highest rate of STEM graduates in the EU, and a young, highly educated population, Ireland has a great talent pool for employers.

Some of the U.S. companies in Ireland include Dell, Indeed, Meta, WP Engine, HP, and GameStop. Enterprise Ireland, a government organization dedicated to growing Irish enterprises in world markets, supports 120 operations in Texas. Accura Outdoors is the newest arrival to the City of Austin.

About 30 percent of all Irish exports go to the U.S. These goods include pharmaceutical products, organic chemicals, medical instruments, and beverages. Ireland also exports insurance and information services to the States. The U.S. exports the following to Ireland: intellectual property licenses, research and development, and management consulting services.

To ensure education is aligned with workforce needs, Ireland launched a program called Springboard in 2011 to offer free education courses that up-skill and re-skill jobseekers in areas where there are labor gaps.

With SXSW unfolding in the City of Austin, TAB CEO Glenn Hamer said this is the perfect time to celebrate and highlight some of our key international partnerships like the one we have with Ireland where we have a great partner and ally in Consul General Robert Hull. Glenn thanked and commended Consul Hull for doing a terrific job representing Ireland in Texas and in several other states. As TAB, we look forward to a continued collaboration with his office to keep expanding the economic exchange between Ireland and Texas.

Other special guests to the Ireland Breakfast Briefing included Texas Workforce Commissioner, Aaron Demerson, the BIRD Foundation’s Shiri Freund Koren, and Shirley Temple, an International Trade Specialist at the Office of Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

Glenn Hamer said Texas is the envy of the nation, and the Governor’s economic development team, led by Adriana Cruz, is a driving reason why. We are lucky to have these types of leaders in Texas with the vision of keep making Texas the top destination for foreign investment.


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