68 new jobs created in Kerry's Gaeltachtaí in 2012
According to Údarás na Gaeltachta, 68 new jobs were created in the Kerry's Gaeltachts - Corca Dhuibhne in West Kerry and Uíbh Rathach in South Kerry - in 2012. However, when job losses are taken into account, there was an added net loss of 24 jobs overall.
Údarás's end of year review, details of which were released this week, states that the new jobs were created in companies operating in the services, food and drink and fish processing industries.
According to the report, Gaeltacht enterprises in the tourism, arts and craft and services sectors, which are heavily reliant on domestic and local expenditure, found business particularly challenging during the year and reduced staff as a result.
There were also 89 people employed on social employment schemes in Corca Dhuibhne and Uíbh Rathach at the end of 2012. The employment schemes are managed and administered by Údarás na Gaeltachta and funded through the Department of Social Protection.
Nationally, Udaras na Gaeltachta approved projects during 2012 which they expect to create 460 new jobs and lead to an overall projected investment of €37 million by Gaeltacht companies.
The end of year review also states that Gaeltacht authority's focus for 2013 is to continue to implement its strategic plan which includes employment creation in key sectors such as natural and marine resources, life sciences, tourism, niche manufacturing, engineering, food and other high-value commodities.
Initiatives central to community development and language planning such as supports for childcare and preschool education, youth development and training, all through the medium of Irish, will also continue to be supported.