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Collaboration illustrates Ireland's animation potential - Ní Riada

6 February, 2017 - by Liadh Ní Riada MEP

Sinn Féin Ireland South MEP Liadh Ní Riada has welcomed the announcement from Canadian studio Mercury Filmworks that it is to team up with Cartoon Saloon at the Lighthouse Studio in Kilkenny.

The move is expected to bring some 140 new jobs to the city.

Speaking from Brussels Ms Ní Riada, who has used her role on the European Parliament's Culture Committee to act as an advocate for Ireland's Audio-Visual Sector, said the industry had huge potential in Ireland.

“I am delighted at today's announcement which further illustrates the potential there is for our country to become a hub for the Audio-Visual arts," she said.

“The film and television industry in Ireland has been one of the success stories of the past 10 years.

"While other sectors struggled to survive the film industry here grew significantly.

“If properly supported it has the potential to be one of Ireland's key industries, attracting investment, jobs and tourism."

She added the threat and uncertainty of Brexit must not be allowed to strangle the burgeoning industry.

“I have met with many independent producers and some broadcasters over the past few months and there is a genuine fear of the unknown implications Brexit will have on the sector, especially as many of the projects are made and funded on a cross border basis. 

"When you couple that with the lack of support that the Irish government are giving the sector, with Budget 2017 significantly reducing capital spend to the arts by more than €34 million, it paints a very worrying picture.

“However, the industry is determined to survive and thrive as this new jobs announcement shows. Just last week I met with representatives from the broadcasting industry and we discussed the potential for more jobs to be brought to Ireland and, crucially, outside of Dublin. 

"I will continue to work with and for the Audio Visual Sector in Ireland to ensure it is represented both at a national and international level."

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