Ireland has transformed its economy over the past couple of decades to turn a previously slumping economy, with high unemployment and high dependence on agricultural sectors into a booming economy, attractive to foreign investors. Unemployment rates have decreased dramatically and Ireland is now experiencing a reversal of the previous exodus of local residents overseas, with the thriving country now attracting highly skilled immigrants as well as ex-patriots returning to their now thriving homeland. This report will look at the background of both Ireland and New Zealand to make comparisons of similarities between the two before going on to highlight factors that have been influential in Ireland's success and the main lessons that New Zealand can learn from this. These include attracting foreign direct investment and an investment in education.
Ireland is a reasonably small country with a population of 3,841,000. They have a modern, trade-dependent economy with growth averaging 9% over the last six years.
In the past, Ireland was heavily reliant on their agricultural sector, producing goods such as; turnips, barley, potatoes, sugar beets, wheat, beef and various dairy products. However in the last decade the agricultural sector has been over-taken by industry and now accounts for only 4% of GDP compared to industry which accounts for 38% of GDP. The Irish industry is comprised of things such as; food products, brewing, textiles, clothing, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, glass and crystal, machinery, transportation equipment and software. These goods make up about 80% of exports and employ 28% of the labor force. Although exports remain the primary engine for Ireland's robust growth, the economy is also benefiting from a rise in consumer spending and recovery in both construction and business investment. Over the past decade, the Irish government has implemented a series of national economic programs designed to curb...