Dublin - Economy

Economy

The Dublin region is the economic centre of Ireland, and was at the forefront of the country's rapid economic expansion during the Celtic Tiger period. In 2009, Dublin was listed as the fourth richest city in the world by purchasing power and 10th richest by personal income. According to Mercer's 2011 Worldwide Cost of Living Survey, Dublin is the 13th most expensive city in the European Union (down from 10th in 2010) and the 58th most expensive place to live in the world (down from 42nd in 2010). As of 2005, approximately 800,000 people were employed in the Greater Dublin Area, of whom around 600,000 were employed in the services sector and 200,000 in the industrial sector.

Many of Dublin's traditional industries, such as food processing, textile manufacturing, brewing, and distilling have gradually declined, although Guinness has been brewed at the St. James's Gate Brewery since 1759. Economic improvements in the 1990s have attracted a large number of global pharmaceutical, information and communications technology companies to the city and Greater Dublin Area. Companies such as Microsoft, Google, Amazon, eBay, PayPal, Yahoo!, Facebook, Twitter and Pfizer now have European headquarters and/or operational bases in the city. Intel and Hewlett-Packard have large manufacturing plants in Leixlip, County Kildare, 15 km (9 mi) to the west.

Financial services have also become important to the city since the establishment of Dublin's International Financial Services Centre in 1987, which is globally recognised as a leading location for a range of internationally traded financial services. More than 500 operations are approved to trade in under the IFSC programme. The centre is host to half of the world's top 50 banks and to half of the top 20 insurance companies. Many international firms have established major headquarters in the city, such as Citibank and Commerzbank. The Irish Stock Exchange (ISEQ), Internet Neutral Exchange (INEX) and Irish Enterprise Exchange (IEX) are also located in Dublin. The economic boom led to a sharp increase in construction, with large redevelopment projects in the Dublin Docklands and Spencer Dock. Completed projects include the Convention Centre, The O2, and the Grand Canal Theatre.

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