LMETBs New Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Training Centre of Excellence in Dundalk, Co Louth receives the highest funding awarded by Enterprise Ireland.
Today, Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD named the 11 successful border county projects from the North East and North West of the country approved to share in the €17m Border Enterprise Development Fund 2020, an initiative of the Government of Ireland administered by Enterprise Ireland.
The venue chosen by Minister Heather Humphreys TD and Enterprise Ireland to make the announcement was LMETBs proposed facility for their Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Training Centre of Excellence in Dundalk, Co Louth which will receive €4.5m funding through the Border Enterprise Development Fund – this is the largest allocation made by the fund to any project.
The Border Enterprise Development Fund, which was launched in January 2020, will provide support for collaborative, enterprise capability building projects to advance entrepreneurship, productivity and innovation in the Border Region. The aim of the fund is to improve the international competitiveness of enterprise in the Border Region in the context of Brexit and other market challenges, which now also include COVID-19.
The Minister acknowledged the drive and commitment of our Chief Executive Martin O’Brien and his team in developing a very well thought out project proposal and on successfully getting through a very competitive and thorough assessment process. She recalled that during very difficult times in the last recession that the Chief Executive delivered the Monaghan Education Campus and Theatre for the County and stated that this project had the capacity to deliver even greater rewards for industries across Ireland.
Martin G O’Brien, CEO, Louth Meath Education Training Board said: “Brexit, and more recently Covid-19, has shone a light on manufacturing in Ireland which is reaching a critical point and needs to change. To successfully compete in the global market, Irish industry must employ Advanced Manufacturing techniques.
This Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Centre of Excellence here in Dundalk will empower and enable Irish industry to make that move and open up opportunities for higher paid employment. LMETB is delighted to lead this national initiative in partnership with Enterprise Ireland, the Department of Education and skills and SOLAS.”
Director of Further Education and Training (FET) Ms Sadie Ward Mc Dermott: remarked on this as a watershed moment for the region and a wonderful achievement for LMETB and Irish industry. She looks forward to supporting the new Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Centre of Excellence in her role as Director of FET and acknowledged the dedication ,and hard work and immense commitment of all involved over the past 18 months in developing the project proposal.
Chairperson of LMETB, Cllr Nick Killian said that he was very impressed that with all that is going on currently in education and training in LMETB, that the Chief Executive found time to dedicate himself to delivering on this project. At a time when significant planning is focused on re-opening schools, LMETB have pushed ahead to support the re-opening of industry. He felt this project demonstrated that LMETB are at the cutting edge of innovation and advancement and living out the vision set for ETBs by government. Not alone will this facility support the orderly and planned reopening of industry but it will support industry in gaining a competitive advantage on their competitor industries in Europe. The Chief Executive has physically located this project centrally on the Dublin Belfast Economic corridor and the linkages and relationships he has forged cross border give a timely all-Ireland dimension to the project that will be critical in Ireland post Brexit.