Dublin’s post-Covid recovery should be a matter for national debate

Multinationals invest in the capital partly because they can attract young workers to live there

Temple Bar has long been one of Dublin busiest hotspots for socialising. But the street are largely empty due to Covid 19 restrictions. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Temple Bar has long been one of Dublin busiest hotspots for socialising. But the street are largely empty due to Covid 19 restrictions. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

 

Part of the State’s foreign direct investment (FDI) strategy is to promote Dublin city as an investment location of international significance, capable of competing with other big European cities for mobile capital. This approach is explicitly laid out in the promotional literature of IDA Ireland, the State’s inward investment agency.

The success of this strategy is apparent in the who’s who of multinational tech names that have chosen to locate in the city, such as Google, Facebook and LinkedIn. Those companies obviously chose to be in the Republic, in part, for its competitive tax regime. But they are also in Dublin because it has an international reputation as a buzzy and attractive place to live and work, which allows these companies to tempt young foreign tech workers to relocate here.

Undeniable vibe

Dublin has long had its problems, such as a shortage of housing and other soaring living costs. But for the past 20 years or so, it has also had an undeniable vibe that has fed directly into the State’s FDI strategy. Without that vibe, which is predicated on social opportunities and nightlife that are considered attractive by young workers, would Google or Facebook have invested so much here?

Local traders group Dublin Town held a web discussion on Monday to come up with ideas to revive the capital’s night-time feel once the pandemic recedes. But it shouldn’t be just left to local officials and businesses to renew the city after the pandemic

Geopolitical mood music suggests Dublin’s attraction as a tax-efficient investment location may come under threat in future years. That leaves the city’s attraction as a location for young workers as one of its remaining cards to play. It is a national imperative that the city recovers as much as possible of its previous buzziness, which has been extinguished by the pandemic and the ensuing anti-virus restrictions that have sucked the life out of the city. A national strategy is required to breathe life back into the capital.

Business Today

Get the latest business news and commentarySIGN UP HERE
The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.