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Saint Patrick’s Day Offers Opportunity to Turn Green into Gold.
The Irish Exporters Association welcomes the significant presence of Irish ministers in export markets for the world-wide Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations and urges those ministers participating to fully appreciate that the reason they are going on these trips is to be front line sales representatives for Ireland. The overseas trips can only be justified if they are used to drive exports, investment and business.
According to Mr John Whelan, Chief Executive of the Irish Exporters Association (IEA), Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations are unique in that no other country in the world can boast of the same international coverage for its national day. The celebrations include such events as parades, receptions and a major greening of the landscape as seen by such international icons as Niagara Falls and the Leaning Tower of Pisa being floodlit in green. “The international celebrations for Saint Patrick’s day are unique in that no other country gets this same type of opportunity and it should be seen as a sin if the opportunity to advance Ireland’s image and increase business and investment overseas is wasted,” said Mr Whelan.
He added that the IEA had some time ago encouraged the Government to use the Saint Patrick's Day celebrations around the world as an opportunity for Government Ministers to visit foreign countries and boost the image of Ireland and assist Irish companies in their sales efforts. “We welcome the efforts of the Government and the feedback we are receiving from exporters has been very positive. We are please to note that many Irish exporting companies are leveraging these visits to get client and partner meetings at events that are supported by the Ministers,” said Mr Whelan. He added that if there was one negative element to the schedule of visits it would be that the bulk of the trips are to Ireland’s more traditional markets and that there has not been enough effort put into increasing ministerial visits in developing markets in Asia, Eastern Europe and South America. Mr Whelan said that he was pleased to note that Taoiseach Enda Kenny will be leading a trade mission to China in the next number of weeks and that Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney, will also be leading a separate mission to China shortly thereafter.
Mr Whelan said that Ireland needs jobs and that the IEA believes one of the best ways to get them is to support initiatives such as these essential ministerial trips during the world-wide Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations to drive exports, investment and business. “We urge all the ministers scheduled to visit overseas markets during the next few days to see it as their duty to insure that their visits will assist companies in their efforts to increase export business and new investments,” concluded Mr Whelan.
For further Information Contact: Mr John Whelan
Telephone; 087 9271243
M/s Gillian Ryan
Telephone ; 01 642 4171