THE Government is planning to deliver 20,000 extra manufacturing jobs over the next three years.
It has launched a plan to provide start-up grants for new manufacturing companies and to reduce their energy and waste disposal costs.
And a new expert report says that manufacturing here is not "dying" - it is changing.
Jobs Minister Richard Bruton said that manufacturing was still a crucial sector with over 200,000 people employed in it.
"We in Government believe that the sector has substantial capacity for jobs growth, and that is why we decided to examine new ways of targeting support at manufacturing," he said.
The announcement was made by Mr Bruton and Education Minister Ruairi Quinn at the new offices of Irish manufacturing company Prodieco in Dublin. It was set up in 1962 providing tool making services.
But since 2000, it has switched its focus to the pharmaceutical industry and now produces tools for companies making plastic packaging for medical drugs.
It employs 130 people in the Cookstown Industrial Estate in Tallaght.