Simon Coveney tells multinationals ‘there won’t be an election’ after evictions vote

Enterprise Minister Simon Coveney

Sarah Collins

The Government has “a lot of work to do” to solve the housing crisis despite winning a confidence vote, Enterprise Minister Simon Coveney has said.

“We won by 19 votes. There’s not going to be an election,” he told business leaders in Dublin just after the Dáil vote.

“But we have a lot of work to do to deal with the issues that provoked a motion of no confidence in the government this week, in the context of housing and homelessness in Ireland.”

He was speaking at an event organised by the American Chambers of Commerce in Ireland (AmCham) which said that housing was the number one challenge for its members here.

Mr Coveney said housing was “the biggest domestic policy priority” and that the crisis “ultimately is a supply issue on the back of the pressures of a rapidly growing population, beyond the predictions that any of us could have had a few years ago”.

He said Ireland needed US jobs and “the tax take” that US companies generate.

“The [Irish American] relationship is absolutely invaluable from an Irish economy perspective,” Mr Coveney added.

“It also provides revenue streams for Ireland to be able to respond to the multiple crises that we’ve had to respond to in recent years.”

An AmCham survey carried out last week found almost two-thirds (64pc) of US firms in Ireland expect to add jobs in the next year, with only 5pc expecting cuts.

Housing is the number one challenge for US firms if they are to continue to expand here, they said, with skills shortages and maintaining R&D tax incentives coming next.

Over two-thirds said they were experiencing skills shortages, mainly in engineering and tech.

Almost all firms (92pc) had a positive view of Ireland as an investment or growth location, based on the experience of their Irish operations this year.