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Another Apple in our eye

Amidst all of the economic gloom, one of the few bright spots has been the continued success of IDA Ireland in attracting overseas investment projects to this country.

However, even by its previous high standards, this was a vintage week for IDA announcements.

On Wednesday, pharmaceutical company Mylan announced the creation of 500 new jobs in Dublin and Galway. This was followed by yesterday's news from Apple that 500 more jobs are to be created in Cork.

The twin announcements are further evidence of a gradual restoration of the international competitiveness that was lost during the latter years of the Celtic Tiger era. Despite all of the criticism it has received from its opponents, our Government is clearly getting at least some things right.

Well done to chief executive Barry Leary and all of those at IDA Ireland who worked so hard to secure these and other projects for this country.

Now that we are, very gradually and painfully, regaining our international competitiveness, we must ensure that we don't repeat the mistakes of the past decade.

Competitiveness is frighteningly easy to lose but, once it has been lost, is extremely difficult to regain.