Fine Gael TD for Kildare South, Martin Heydon has today welcomed the launch of the Action Plan for Jobs – Regional by the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD.

This is a five year, €250million strategy aimed at accelerating the jobs recovery in every part of the country.

“With the creation of 80,000 jobs and the economic recovery well underway, the investment contained in the Action Plan for Jobs – Regional will help create jobs in all parts of the country including here in Kildare.

“Employment is growing in every region but extra resources are needed to accelerate job creation in regional areas and that is what the Action Plan for Jobs – Regional is all about. Eight regions will develop a strategy setting out lists of actions with timelines and responsibility allocated, and then monitoring implementation. A regional team will be established to meet with stakeholders, identify the strengths of a region and to finalise actions. The first plan will be published in the coming weeks for the Midlands, with six plans published by July and all eight in place by the autumn.

“IDA Ireland will roll out a 5-year €150 million capital investment programme to help attract more multinational jobs into each region. I am confident that this will provide a huge benefit to Kildare and the surrounding areas.

“Lead responsibility for coordinating the development of the plan will be assigned to an Enterprise Ireland or IDA Ireland official in each region. Stakeholders including enterprise agencies, educational institutions, local authorities, businesses and community groups will be responsible for working together to develop the Action Plan in each region.

“The Action Plan for Jobs – Regional is based on the principle that the best way to support job-creation in towns and villages across the country is to support agencies and organisations within each region to build on the particular strengths and assets of their area and drive new job-creation strategies and projects.

“To support and encourage regional stakeholders in working together, up to €100 million in Enterprise Ireland funding will be made available over 5 years through a series of competitive calls. The first tranche of €50 million will be made available from 2015. Funding under these programmes will be allocated on a competitive basis, with most funds awarded to regional projects offering the best prospects for job-creation.

“Our economic recovery is well underway, with Dublin and other cities recording particularly strong growth in job creation. We want to spread that jobs recovery to every region and every community. Small, local businesses are growing and benefitting from investment, and strategies such as that announced today will ensure this continues.”