I welcome the announcement by Roche that they remain committed to their manufacturing plant at Clarecastle, County Clare and that the present workforce numbers will remain. There had been much speculation in recent weeks following difficulties with a new product which was to be produced at the plant.

This is really positive news for the entire workforce, the local economy and community in Clarecastle. There were some genuine fears expressed in recent weeks following a strategic review of the Roche Group’s global operations and this news brings a huge sense of relief to all concerned.

Thankfully, following a re-assessment of the Roche’s manufacturing network, the decision has been made to keep all of Roche’s current manufacturing sites including the site in Clarecastle. The company has reassured employees that there are no plans at this time to reduce the number of employees in Clarecastle.

This announcement is testament to the management team led by Managing Director Mr. Sven Hauptmann and the many years of hard work given by a loyal, skilled and dedicated workforce in Clarecastle. Now that this decision has been made I am confident the company can bounce back and grow into the future. The challenge now is to secure the production of additional new products on site in Clarecastle and I’m aware that talks are on-going in this regard.

I want to thank the IDA as well as Minister Richard Bruton for their efforts and involvement in this process. There is no question that their role had an influence on this decision.

This is a good news story. It underlines also that having stabilized our public finances, Ireland is an attractive place to do business in and has many strengths in terms of our educated and skilled workforce.