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Amid the challenges of an ongoing pandemic and against a backdrop of Brexit, Ireland’s resolve remains steadfast according to State representatives and industry leaders.

Skillnet Ireland Chief Executive Paul Healy recently spoke to Newsweek magazine as part of its country report on Ireland alongside leading political and industry voices, including Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo VaradkarMinister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris, and IBEC CEO Danny McCoy, among others.

Recognising Ireland’s robust economic performance in the five years preceding the emergence of COVID-19, the report focuses on the country’s ambition and ability to grapple with the economic impact of the pandemic, while the initial effects of Brexit continue to be felt. The report also highlights ever-present challenges including the pace of digitalisation and the climate agenda, which offer opportunities for Ireland to lead by example. Skillnet Ireland’s role in driving productivity and competitiveness in these areas, through enterprise-led talent and workforce development, underpins the country’s responsiveness according to Chief Executive Paul Healy:

“Skillnet Ireland operates in a strong position at the intersection of government, the enterprise sector and the education system. We’re in the middle of that triangle and, from there, we can comfortably lead and coordinate responses. We see what government wants, we see what businesses need, and we see what the education and training system can deliver. We then mediate that triangle, making the responses happen and with speed.

Our approach works because we have deep roots in the enterprise sector in Ireland, which brings several advantages. Firstly, we give a direct voice to employers—they’re at the forefront of their industries and are best placed to see what new jobs are coming down the line, or what the future of work looks like. By working closely with businesses, the upskilling programs Skillnet Ireland delivers are very closely aligned to the real demands of the labour market”.

Continue reading the full report on Newsweek.

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