COMMENTS from the Vice President of Paypal’s global operations have sparked fears concerning how many of the 1,000 jobs announced by the company will actually be filled by people from Dundalk.
Louise Phelan said that a lack of candidates with a second language could mean they will be forced to look abroad for staff at the new plant.
Speaking this week Ms Phelan said concerning the deluge of applications for the new Paypal jobs that: “We will get a huge amount of applications … and we will go through them in a lot of detail to make sure that we can support the Irish economy,” she said.
“But at the end of the day, if I can’t get the people with the languages I am going to ... bring those people into Ireland.”
The news comes as it was reported last week that over 1,000 workers were recruited to fill positions in jobs in Ireland where candidates were not available here.
The figures suggest more than a quarter of all new IT jobs are outsourced to people from other countries.
Chairman of Dundalk Chamber of Commerce, Paddy Malone said he is “not surprised” by Ms Phelan’s comments and said that they were “refreshingly honest”.
“Realistically Dundalk is not going to be able to fill 1,100 to 1,200 industry specific roles at PayPal. When the news came I said it was going to be great news for the region that includes the county, parts of Meath and Monaghan.
“If we can fill 600 of these jobs that would be a huge bonus. The real trick with these jobs is getting those people who have been recruited from further afield to move to Dundalk. We don’t want to become a reverse commuter town.
“We don’t want people coming up the M1 in the morning and turning and around and going home that night and not stepping foot in Dundalk.
“We want these people to stay here in Dundalk and to see the town as a viable option as a place to live. Statistically it has been said that for everyone one job created in manufaturing, three jobs are created in the area as a result. While three might be a high number, I absolutely think that creating two jobs for every job at Paypal is achieveable.”
Mr Malone says that he hopes that Paypal will adopt an attitude similar to that of American multinational Prometric, who have also recently announced jobs in Dundalk.
“Prometric have said that they want to put roots down in Dundalk and to create a legacy here. We would hope as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility that Paypal will maybe thinky similiary in this regard,” concluded Mr Malone.
Speaking to the Dundalk Democrat TD Peter Fitzpatrick was more optimistic about the amount of jobs that could be filled by people in Dundalk. “I have absolutely no doubt that these jobs will be filled by the people of Dundalk. Dundalk is one of the best educated ubran areas in the world.
“I’m a TD on the ground here and I speak to people everyday about these jobs and when they are coming online. We have the people with languages here. It it will be no problem whatsoever.”