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Devastating Dell job losses could have been avoided

8 January, 2009


Responding to this morning's announcement by Dell of 1,900 job losses Sinn Féin Enterprise, Trade and Employment Spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD has sharply criticised the government for its lack lustre approach to tackling the impending job losses in the company which have been mooted for some time now.

Deputy Morgan said:

"The job losses in Dell will have a devastating impact on Limerick and the surrounding counties. As will the knock on impact of removing this integral element of Dell's operations in Ireland on small businesses across the region.

"The government has failed to take action over Dell. For months it has been clear that Dell was reviewing its position in Ireland and yet the Government failed to come up with an alternative that could have saved these 1,900 manufacturing jobs.

"The Tánaiste and Minister for Trade Enterprise and Employment Mary Coughlan failed to capture the opportunity when interest was expressed by a consortium led Nicky Hartery to take over Dell's manufacturing operation. No stone was left unturned by the government when Anglo Irish Bank ran its own business into the ground and needed bailing out. Therefore it beggars belief that the government has taken such a 'laissez faire' approach to such an integral employer for the Munster region.

"Job losses in the Irish manufacturing sector have been significant and today's announcement by Dell Ireland signals a tipping point for the sector. We have seen other Governments intervene such as Poland who invested a €52.7m government subsidy to computer giant Dell. Job retention and creation must become a central strategy for government. This means taking a hands-on innovative approach when companies like Dell first mute intentions to move their operations out of Ireland. The government did not present an alternative proposal to Dell. It did not work sufficiently with potential investors interested in taking over the operations. And by not doing so they have effectively sat back and let the chip fall where they may leaving thousands of workers and businesses across Munster paying heavy price." ENDS

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