NEW figures yesterday show Irish business continuing to invest in R&D despite the recession, Martin Shanahan, chief executive of Forfas, said at the publication of the joint Forfas/CSO 2009/2010 Business Expenditure on R&D Survey.
"Contrary to expectations, the business R&D survey indicates that expenditure in Irish indigenous businesses remained strong during 2009," Mr Shanahan said.
Key findings show expenditure on R&D rose 16.3pc to €1.9bn in 2009, from €1.603bn in 2007. Preliminary estimates for 2010 indicate a 1pc decline to €1.833bn -- still well above the 2007 figure. Irish companies expect to increase slightly their R&D outlay to €583m in 2010.
Small enterprises accounted for €300m in 2009, up 7.9pc from 2007. Foreign-owned enterprises' spend rose by 12.5pc to €1.31.bn in 2009.