Varadkar says there is no indication the tech giants will close Irish offices

Leo Varadkar said the government has asked IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland to step up their engagement with major tech employers in Ireland.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, TD, said there was no indication that big tech companies were planning to shut down their Irish operations altogether.

Varadkar released the statement after a meeting with IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. This follows recent massive job cuts at Twitter and Bandaged.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment said the meeting followed “a series of direct contacts” between his office and the agencies with the companies involved.

“My main concern is with the staff and their families who will be affected by downsizing at some of the technology companies operating in Ireland,” Varadkar said. “We will assist all affected employees in their search for alternative employment or other opportunities.”

In Ireland, employers proposing collective redundancies must first consult with employee representatives. Companies are also required to inform the government in advance. However, neither Twitter nor Stripe informed the Enterprise Department of their plans to cut staff.

“There are well-established statutory processes to protect employees, and we are confident that all national employment rights requirements for consultation and notification of redundancies will be met once decisions on any job cuts are made. will be taken,” Varadkar said.

Employers must also have a genuine business reason to terminate employees and must use fair and reasonable selection criteria in deciding who to terminate. The penalty for not following this procedure can be up to €250,000 and can also result in prosecution for unfair dismissal.

Irish weather reported last week, Stripe has entered into a 30-day consultation period with its Irish staff.

There are growing fears that Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, is also plan a big discount in its global workforce.

Around 3,000 people are employed by Meta in Ireland, across its European headquarters in Dublin, its Reality Labs team in Cork and its data center in Clonee, Co Meath.

It comes amid a wider wave of layoffs in the tech sector. Job losses at Stripe and Twitter follow staff cuts at Instantaneous, Patreon and Intercomamong others. Intel also confirmed that it was considering cutting jobs amid continued declines in global PC sales.

Despite funding cuts affecting the tech sector in Ireland, Varadkar said the country was close to full employment and there was “high demand” for tech, marketing and other skills across all sectors.

“There is a strong pipeline of new investment from overseas and in Ireland across a range of sectors, including technology and beyond, and we expect many positive announcements in the months ahead” , he added.

“We have ongoing engagement with major tech employers through IDA and Enterprise Ireland, and the government has asked the agencies to step up that engagement.”

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Leo Varadkar at the RDS in Dublin in 2018. Image: Eóin Noonan/MoneyConf via Flickr (CC by 2.0)

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