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Matheson FDI index shows strong US sentiment towards Ireland

PRACTICE AREA GROUP: US Business Group, International Business
DATE: 23.05.2011

US sentiment towards Ireland as a place to do business remains extremely strong, with the new research launched by Matheson showing continued confidence by American organisations towards doing business in Ireland.

The first Matheson Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Index, launched in May 2011, reveals that US corporations view Ireland’s tax regime, its English-speaking and skilled workforce, ease of access and Government incentives as key factors for investment in Ireland.

The research, the first in a bi-annual series conducted for Matheson by Amarách Research, surveys 250 top Irish American business leaders in the US and investigates their perceptions of Ireland as a place to invest, their attitudes towards foreign direct investment and the factors affecting it.

Among the most positive attributes cited by US corporations considering Ireland as a location for FDI were the competitive tax regime (29%) and ease of access from North America (18%), with Ireland scoring ahead of other European, Asian, Middle Eastern and African countries on areas including corporate tax, interest rates, physical infrastructure, IT and the skilled labour pool.

Ireland was a ‘good’ place to do business, 58% of respondents said, while one third said that they would be ‘likely’ to set up operations in Ireland.

37%, meanwhile, said that their attitudes towards ventures in Ireland had become more positive in the last five years.

Liam Quirke, Managing Partner at Matheson, commented, “The findings of the survey overall are extremely positive. FDI is the cornerstone upon which our economic recovery is dependent. Ireland’s profile and reputation has taken a real battering in the midst of the global financial and economic crisis.”

“Both domestically and internationally many have focused on the negative; this does not tell the full story. FDI in Ireland has remained very active and the results of the inaugural Matheson FDI Index confirm that despite the period of global recession over the past two years, Ireland’s offering to US multinational corporations remains one of the strongest in the world,” Mr Quirke said.

Matheson opened its first US office 15 years ago in Palo Alto in California and is the only Irish law firm with a presence on both the East and West Coasts of the US.

The firm has also recently announced a significant expansion of its New York office, making it the largest Irish law firm in the US and further enhancing its unrivalled offering to US corporations doing business in and through Ireland.

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