Irish ‘safe harbour’ for Asian investment after Brexit

By Pádraig Hoare

The Irish Government could benefit from Brexit by encouraging multinationals already based here to put through more Asian business through the country, the Oireachtas has been told.

Executive director of Asian business think-tank Asia Matters, Martin Murray told the Oireachtas Foreign Affairs and Trade Committee that there were considerable worries among business and investment leaders in Asia because of US protectionism and Brexit.

Ireland could become a “safe harbour” for Asian business after Brexit, he said.

“The global business climate has become unstable, so many executives in Asia are very worried about risk management in global expansion, particularly in the West. This creates an opportunity for Ireland to present itself as a safe harbour, given Ireland’s pro-business environment and global talent pool within an English speaking, common law EU country,” Mr Murray said.

The Cork native added that a key question was how Ireland was positioned as a strategic location for Asian businesses that operate globally between Asia, the EU and the US.

“Given new US protectionism, Ireland should encourage existing US multinationals in Ireland with EMEA responsibility to also take on Asia responsibilities. This has already started internally with some US companies. The more such activities are embedded in Ireland, the more this increases the commitment of these US companies to stay in Ireland,” Mr Murray said.

KEYWORDS: business, finance


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