Thursday 18 January 2018

Capital investment into Ireland hits $5.5bn - world FDI report

Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

Capital investment flow into Ireland hit $5.5bn last year, as the number of FDI projects rose to 178, according to a new report.

The UK and Ireland both witnessed increases in FDI last year, with project numbers rising 3pc and 4pc respectively, but FDI into Europe by project numbers fell by nearly 9pc last year, according to the annual FDI report from the Financial Times' FDI Intelligence.

Capital investment increased by nearly 9pc last year, while the number of jobs created via FDI grew by 1pc to 1.89 million. However, the number of projects declined 7pc.

The report focuses on "greenfield investment", which it describes as "the sharp edge of foreign investment".

"It has the most tangible impact on economic development and is the most solid indicator of a country's competitiveness," the report said.

The report points out that the big FDI story of the past year is India. After a long period of trailing behind China, it's now racing past its rival.

India was the highest ranked country by capital investment in 2015, with $63bn-worth of FDI projects announced.

Meanwhile, China saw a 23pc decline in capital investment and a 16pc drop in FDI projects.

"Asia-Pacific remained the leading destination region for FDI in 2015, attracting 45pc of all capital investment globally in 2015," the report said.

"Although the number of FDI projects into the region decreased by 7pc, the total capital investment increased by 29pc." In Europe, Ireland and the UK were among the countries that saw the number of projects increase.

FDI into the latter, however, could be at risk if voters opt to pull out of the European Union.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney has warned that there could be a reduction in the level of foreign direct investment because of the level of uncertainty.

The report showed that FDI into Finland by project numbers rose by 23pc in 2015, reaching 127. The Czech Republic experienced an increase in FDI across project numbers (33pc), capital investment (54pc) and jobs (36pc).

The number of recorded projects in France and Spain continued to decline in 2015, falling 1pc and 19pc, respectively. However, the amount of capital invested in the countries has increased by a respective 24pc and 13pc.

Capital investment in Serbia almost doubled to $4.4bn following a United Arab Emirates-based property investor committing to jointly invest $3bn in the country. Despite Europe declining as a source of FDI projects, capital investment from the region increased 7pc to $258.5bn.

Companies from the UK, Germany and France collectively account for more than 50pc of FDI projects from the region.

FDI into North America increased in 2015 by nearly 10pc, with total inward capital investment of $68.8bn. Project numbers declined by 6pc to 1734.

New York, Texas and Florida were the top three destination states in 2015 for FDI by capital investment. California dropped from second position to fifth and its market share of North

American FDI reduced from 11pc to 6pc.

Washington State, in the Pacific Northwest, was one of the big FDI winners last year, seeing the number of projects increasing by 42pc to 27 in 2015, while capital investment increased from $487.3m to $803.5m.

Florida also increased its profile with outward investments increasing 66pc and the number of projects increasing by 3pc to 111.

Irish Independent

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