Ireland is set to become the global leader in cloud computing, according to the country’s Taoiseach (Prime Minister), Enda Kenny.
Kenny made the comments at the New York Stock Exchange on Monday ahead of ringing the opening bell. The NYSE was celebrating Ireland Day as part of wider St Patrick’s Day celebrations in the city.
Describing Ireland’s investment in cloud computing as one of the country’s “key strengths” Kenny said,
“We are well on the way to establishing Ireland as one of the cloud computing capitals of the world. Seven of the world’s top ten Cloud Data Centre operators are already in Ireland, including Amazon, Google and Microsoft.
“This is no surprise to me: we have the infrastructure, the technological expertise, the skill base, the track record and, above all, the adaptability, to deliver. This is one of the most exciting areas of development in Ireland and I am convinced that, at the rate we are going, Ireland can be the Cloud Computing Capital of the World.”
Kenny would appear to be referencing a pledge made in his programme for government over a year ago to make Ireland a “leader in the emerging I.T. market of cloud computing.”
The government’s pledge came on foot of a significant report by Goodbody Economic Consultants, commissioned by Microsoft, which said that cloud computing, “[represented] a huge opportunity for Irish firms, public bodies and the economy as a whole. Realising this opportunity depends on moving at a rapid pace so that Ireland can establish itself as a Centre of Excellence for Cloud Computing before any other nation seeks to position itself in this way. The opportunity to create new economic activity and jobs by becoming a world centre for the development and export of Cloud Computing services will only be realised if Irish firms are early to these new world markets. ”
In the past year Ireland has seen significant investment in cloud computing technologies. In December CeltixConnect (@seafibrenetwork | Facebook) began laying its “game changing” undersea high-speed fibre-optic data cables between Ireland the UK. Both Google and Amazon committed to open data centers in Ireland in the next year.
During the event Kenny was keen to allay fears over the Irish economic state, citing Ireland’s young English-speaking workforce, “good infrastructure, [and] a government determined to succeed,” and access to Europe’s wider market.
Kenny was in the US to promote Irish business and culture to US investors and tourists. He spent much of St Patrick’s Day in Chicago before moving on to New York and later Washington DC, to meet President Obama today.