Wednesday 18 October 2017

Government offers €100m fund to lure EU agencies here post-Brexit

In its bid for the EMA, the Government set out three options for premises – 91-94 North Wall Quay in Dublin’s Docklands, City Block 9 on North Wall Quay, and a location at Dublin Airport. Photo: Frank McGrath
In its bid for the EMA, the Government set out three options for premises – 91-94 North Wall Quay in Dublin’s Docklands, City Block 9 on North Wall Quay, and a location at Dublin Airport. Photo: Frank McGrath
Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

The Government is offering more than €100m in rental and relocation support in its bids for two EU agencies displaced from London as a result of Brexit.

A €78m contribution is being offered towards the relocation expenses of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) if it opts for Dublin, including €15m towards the cost of fit-out/rent of the selected premises in the first year, 2019, and a further €7m a year up to 2028 for rent and maintenance.

A relocation support service will be contracted, with about €10m, to help EMA staff and their families with identifying appropriate accommodation, schools and jobs for spouses/partners.

The EMA employs nearly 900 staff and acts as a one-stop-shop for approving and monitoring the safety of drugs across Europe. It currently attracts 36,000 experts a year to London for meetings, and is a prized asset.

The Government is to offer up to €13.5m in rental cost support to attract the European Banking Authority (EBA), which while it employs considerably less than the EMA at fewer than 200, would still be a prestigious win.

The Government believes that the figure will cover 50pc of the rental costs over a 10-year period. €1m will also be offered to help EBA staff and their families towards providing professional relocation services.

Frankfurt has already been tipped as a strong contender for the EBA, which writes and co-ordinates banking rules for the bloc, as the German financial hub already hosts the European Central Bank and the EU insurance agency.

In its bid for the EMA, the Government set out three options for premises - 91-94 North Wall Quay in Dublin's Docklands, City Block 9 on North Wall Quay, and a location at Dublin Airport.

The Government has obtained a reserve on each of the three building options.

Two of the buildings will be available to the agency by the expected UK withdrawal date at the end of March 2019, while the third option at Dublin Airport allows for a completely bespoke development, which would be ready during 2020.

The bid for the EBA said a shortlist of 15 office sites had been identified, all of which it said could cater to the EBA's requirements and timeline. Options include sites in both the northside and southside of Dublin.

Nineteen cities are bidding to host the EMA, while eight are offering to give the EBA a home.

A final decision is expected in November.

Irish Independent

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