15th May 2014
Fine Gael TD for Kildare North, Anthony Lawlor, warmly welcomes the announcement this morning (Thursday) by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, that funding has been provided to seek out and support Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneurs.

“The Government is committing €2m nationally to find, recognise and support the best young entrepreneurs in every county in the country to help them grow and develop their ideas. Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition will be run by the new Local Enterprise Offices, and the winners at county level will be eligible for an investment in their business of up to €25,000, while the winners at national level can receive an additional investment of up to €50,000.

“It is widely recognised that Ireland has excellent start-up companies and entrepreneurs, but we just don’t have enough of them. Most importantly two thirds of all new jobs come from start-ups. Comparing Ireland internationally, we have a high percentage of young entrepreneurs and due to the problem of youth unemployment in our country, it is vital that our youth are given support to grow their businesses and create more jobs. Today’s announcement does exactly that as it is aimed at those under 30 years of age.

“For a long time I have been pressing the need to support our young entrepreneurs. Through my role on the Oireachtas Jobs Committee I have continuously been urging greater emphasis on this cohort of people. This government has responded to their needs by establishing an Entrepreneurship Fund for start-ups by people aged 25, a Graduate Recruitment Programme and a number of initiatives for supporting young people in business through the Action Plan for Jobs 2014. This is proof of the commitment by this government to support our young people.”