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Why Dublin is winning a bulk of Brexit-fuelled relocations

Edmund Heaphy
Finance and news reporter
Cranes seen in Dublin’s expanding financial district. Photo: Reuters

One of the more overlooked aspects of Ireland that explains its success in winning post-Brexit investment is the stability of its political climate.

Though Irish prime minister Leo Varadkar leads a minority government — meaning that he basically serves at the pleasure of the main opposition party — a collapse of his government would not precipitate any major change in policy.

And that is especially true when it comes to Ireland’s approach to financial services and foreign direct investment. All of the main parties that could end up leading a government after a general election are staunchly supportive of Ireland’s existing business climate.

With dozens of London-based firms planning to set up new operations or expand existing ones as a result of Brexit, Dublin, the country’s capital, is still the most popular choice. Barclays and Bank of America are two firms that have chosen the city.

READ MORE: Brexit is causing 7,000 jobs to move out of London

Though Ireland is still scarred to an extent by the financial crisis, it has long been a key hub for financial services firms, and a long-established centre for multinational corporations.

Apple, for instance, has had a base in the country since 1980 — and successive Irish governments have made sure that the company wants to stay. And Google, Facebook, and Twitter also have their European headquarters in the city.

Ireland has a comparatively low corporate tax rate and is routinely ranked as one of the best countries in Europe to do business. It also has one of the most educated workforces in the world.

The point is: None of this is going to change any time soon. Politicians from all sides of the political spectrum routinely talk about Ireland engaging with the global economy.

As other countries battle with populist parties that seek a rejection of globalisation, Ireland is more than aware of how much it has benefitted from being open to the world.