Burton urges SME community to engage with her Department and FÁS to provide quality employment experience in the National Internship Scheme

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Minister Burton addresses ‘Women in Business’ event - part of Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Week

Joan Burton TD, Minister for Social Protection, this evening (Wednesday, 25 May) addressed a ‘Women in Business’ event, part of Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Week at Carton House Hotel in Co. Kildare.  

Minister Burton began by outlining details of the new National Internship Scheme which will commence in July: “This Government has always said that the majority of sustainable jobs will be created by the private sector and we want to work with business people, entrepreneurs and the banking sector to grow Ireland’s economy and create jobs. My own Department is developing the National Internship Scheme, which will provide 5,000 work experience opportunities for jobseekers in the private, public or community and voluntary sectors.

“I am pleased to be able to confirm that Mr. Martin Murphy, Managing Director of Hewlett Packard Ireland, has been appointed as the independent chair of the Steering Group which has responsibility for overseeing the implementation of the National Internship Scheme.”

Minister Burton continued: “The Jobs Initiative, which was announced by the Government earlier this month, will be a major step in getting Ireland back on the road to recovery. I and my colleagues in Government are, over the coming weeks and months, introducing a number of measures (including the national Internship Scheme) to assist with getting people back to work, providing opportunities for those who have lost their jobs to re-skill and building the confidence that will encourage consumers to spend.”

These measures include:

  • almost 21,000 education, training and internship places which will prepare and assist jobseekers to find jobs and get workplace experience;
  • a partial loan guarantee scheme which will be of particular help to the innovative companies which the Government is trying to encourage as part of the growth strategy;
  • a new temporary second reduced rate of VAT of 9% for the tourism sector;
  • building on existing initiatives to promote greater access to procurement opportunities for SMEs, including through identifying and overcoming barriers to their participation in the procurement process. 

Minister Burton continued: “ In the context of the National Internship Scheme, I am particularly calling on SMEs to engage with my Department and FÁS to provide valuable and meaningful work experience to people without work who want to enhance their current skills and develop new ones. My Department is meeting the cost of the National Internship Scheme so this is an opportunity for the private sector to play their part in a depressed jobs market without cost,” said Minister Burton.

The Minister commended Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Week as an excellent opportunity for business people across the country to access practical and valuable advice and support in a wide range of areas from business management and accessing finance to sector-specific information on areas such as IT and agriculture.


Last modified:25/05/2011