Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I remain unconvinced there will be a huge exodus of actual people to Dublin, so infrastructural shortcomings may be moot. Most financial services operations these days are almost location independent.  The regulators will require that the key decision makers are working from Dublin, but that doesn't stop them just living in Hotels here 4 nights a week. A high profile front office in a key location will suffice.

What probably will transfer to Dublin is large assets on balance sheets distorting our GDP figures still further. Perhaps more profits will be declared here boosting our Corporation tax take, but that could be the height of our benefits.

What no one is talking about is all the smaller and medium UK businesses in other industries which require access to the Single Market for either their inputs or sales. They are probably taking a more "wait and see approach" because shifting plant is no trivial exercise and they don't have the same corporate planning resources in any case.

However I could see a real panic developing if a hard Brexit takes place and tariff and non-tariff barriers are set up particularly in high tariff industries like food. Some very rapid re-locations of some parts of UK businesses to Ireland and Irish Businesses to UK could be required to facilitate continues market access and reduced tariffs.

Ireland would be ideally placed to pick up such smaller businesses as many may not have much in the way of foreign language skills.  Also there is no need for them to be located in the greater Dublin region, so infrastructural constraints need not apply.

There is a lot of under-utilised labour and facilities capacity in more rural Irish towns which could benefit a lot from even a 50 job business moving in.  US FDI has been primarily large, knowledge intensive industries requiring access to large skilled workforces that can only be found in large urban centres. Smaller UK FDI in non-financial industries could have a proportionately far more beneficial social impact even where their contribution to GDP isn't very significant.


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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Oct 18th, 2017 at 11:03:42 PM EST
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