157. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the actions she has taken to protect jobs at a company (details supplied); the supports in place for employees that will be made redundant; if she has spoken with the management of the company regarding these job losses; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20771/18 asked on 10 May 2018 - Job Losses)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 153 to 155, inclusive, and 157 together.
The announcement by Coca-Cola that it will be closing Athy International Concentrates, on a phased basis from September 2018 to December 2019, is very disappointing. While I very much regret the decision the company has taken, I do welcome its commitment to making every effort to help those employees who will lose their jobs. This includes redund...

158. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the amount allocated separately to research and development under the MFF programmes 2007-2013 and 2014-2020 and in the proposed 2021-2027 programme. (Question 20773/18 asked on 10 May 2018 - EU Funding)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The European Union invests significantly in research and innovation through a number of its programmes, with the majority of that funding concentrated in the Framework Programmes for Research and Innovation.  The amounts for the last and current iterations of the Framework Programme, as well as the proposed amount for the next programme are listed in the table:
 Programme Amount Allocated FP7 (2007-2013) €5...

207. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the annual targets for attaining 70,000 returned emigrants as per the A Programme for A Partnership Government commitment in tabular form; and the progress to date. (Question 19617/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Job Creation Targets)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The Government’s goal is to support the creation of an additional 200,000 jobs by 2020, including 135,000 outside of Dublin, and to attract back at least 70,000 emigrants. The whole of Government effort to deliver on these objectives is supported by the annual Action Plan for Jobs. 
The CSO estimates that between April 2016 and April 2017, 27,400 Irish emigrants returned to Ireland. As the economy continues to grow and ...

208. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the way in which research and development expenditure has been afforded a sufficiently high priority in Departments since the launch of Innovation 2020 (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19632/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Research and Development Supports)

Minister of State at the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy John Halligan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 208 and 213 together.
As part of a coordinated European response to the challenges for growth and jobs, Ireland, along with our EU colleagues, signed up to the Europe 2020 Strategy in 2011. Under Europe 2020, Ireland committed to raise gross (public and private) investment in Research and Development (R&D;) to 2.5% of GNP by 2020. We reiterated this commitment in In...

211. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the status of plans to appoint two further directors to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board; and the criteria under consideration for their selection. (Question 19628/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Appointments to State Boards)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 211, 212, 215 and 217 together.
The Board of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board is appointed by me as Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation in accordance with the provisions of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board Act 2003 and in compliance with the procedures outlined in the ‘Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies (2016). The Board consists of a Chairperson...

212. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if a representative for small policy holders will be included on the Personal Injuries Assessment Board and in the future appointment of directors to the board. (Question 19629/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Appointments to State Boards)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 211, 212, 215 and 217 together.
The Board of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board is appointed by me as Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation in accordance with the provisions of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board Act 2003 and in compliance with the procedures outlined in the ‘Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies (2016). The Board consists of a Chairperson...

213. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if there is still a commitment to attain the Innovation 2020 research and development intensity target of 2.5% of GNP in view of recently published reports (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19631/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Research and Development Supports)

Minister of State at the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy John Halligan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 208 and 213 together.
As part of a coordinated European response to the challenges for growth and jobs, Ireland, along with our EU colleagues, signed up to the Europe 2020 Strategy in 2011. Under Europe 2020, Ireland committed to raise gross (public and private) investment in Research and Development (R&D;) to 2.5% of GNP by 2020. We reiterated this commitment in In...

214. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the number of visits since 2011 sponsored by IDA Ireland to Dublin that also visited Cork and to Cork that also visited Dublin, in the context of the agency’s Horizon 2020 strategy; and if the target of 50% of investments to be located outside Dublin and Cork will be reached. (Question 19705/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - IDA Ireland Site Visits)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): IDA Ireland’s primary regional development goal, as set out in its current strategy ‘Winning: Foreign Direct Investment 2015-2019’, is to increase investment by 30% to 40% in every region of Ireland. Real progress has been made towards that target over the first three years of this strategy with half of all jobs created by IDA client companies since 2015 located outside Dublin.
IDA Ireland collates data on the number of...

219. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation her views on introducing a new five-year cycle with respect to the programme for research in third level institutions; the duration to the cycle in operation; when it expires; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20097/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Third Level Funding)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The Programme for Research in Third-Level Institutions (PRTLI) was launched in 1998, with five cycles of expenditure to date.  In addition to supporting the provision of top-class research infrastructure (buildings, laboratories and cutting-edge equipment), PRTLI saw significant investment in human capital development, through Structured PhD/Emergent Technology programmes across Ireland’s Higher Education Institutes (HE...

220. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the amount of funding allocated to Enterprise Ireland, local enterprise offices, LEOs, InterTradeIreland and IDA Ireland, by capital and current allocations in each of the years from 2014 to 2018, in tabular form. (Question 20098/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Departmental Funding)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The distribution of Current and Capital allocations by my Department to Enterprise Ireland, LEOs, InterTrade Ireland and the IDA, in each of the years from 2014 to 2018, is set out in tabular form. 
Enterprise Ireland 
 - Current Capital Total 2014 €80.873m €159.6m - plus €11m in capital carryover €251.473m 2015 €83.722m €163.43m - Plus €12m in capital carryover €259.152m 2016 €79.887m €173.6m €25...

221. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the progress to date regarding filling positions for the allocation made in budget 2018 to recruit a further 40 to 50 staff to supplement existing staffing numbers in her Department and agencies under her remit, as a Brexit measure. (Question 20099/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Brexit Staff)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): In my Department, a dedicated Brexit Unit was established in 2016, led at Assistant Secretary level within the EU Affairs and Trade Policy Division, to coordinate and represent the Department and it’s Agencies response to Brexit.  During 2017, this Unit increased its staffing complement to lead on engagements with a broad range of stakeholder to further inform and validate this response.
Given the wide mission my Depart...

222. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the number of staff recruited in Enterprise Ireland, local enterprise offices, LEOs, InterTradeIreland and IDA Ireland since the Brexit referendum in June 2016, by new staff hires and replacement staff in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20100/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Brexit Staff)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): As the Deputy will be aware, an additional €3 million was secured for my Department in respect of Pay in Budget 2017 targeted specifically to assist with increased staffing needs for the Department and a number of our Agencies to deal with the evolving Brexit scenario.  In Budget 2018, an additional pay allocation of a further €3 million was gained for further strengthening staff resources in respect of Brexit, within t...

223. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation her views on whether accountants are being unfairly penalised by the audit exemption removal provisions in the Companies Act 2014 in respect of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20180/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): A company that qualifies as small or micro sized may qualify for the audit exemption. This entitlement is lost if the company fails to file its annual return on time. 
At present, over 93% of Irish registered companies meet their filing date obligations. Accordingly, the vast majority of small and micro sized companies file on time and do not, therefore, lose their entitlement to the audit exemption. 
Companies can ha...

224. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the reason sections 9 and 10 have not been referred to the statutory Company Law Review Group on innovation in respect of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20181/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 224 to 226, inclusive, and 228 together.
The Company Law Review Group’s (‘the CLRG’) review of the audit exemption in 2009 led to recommendations to extend the audit exemption to companies limited by guarantee and dormant companies.  
The CLRG returned to the issue of the audit exemption in the course of 2011 and this is set out in the Group’s published 2011 Report. This more recent exa...

225. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the reason she has not referred the loss of the audit exemption to the statutory Company Law Review Group in view of the fact it last reviewed the matter in 2009; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20182/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 224 to 226, inclusive, and 228 together.
The Company Law Review Group’s (‘the CLRG’) review of the audit exemption in 2009 led to recommendations to extend the audit exemption to companies limited by guarantee and dormant companies.  
The CLRG returned to the issue of the audit exemption in the course of 2011 and this is set out in the Group’s published 2011 Report. This more recent exa...

226. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if a recommendation (details supplied) will be implemented; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20183/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 224 to 226, inclusive, and 228 together.
The Company Law Review Group’s (‘the CLRG’) review of the audit exemption in 2009 led to recommendations to extend the audit exemption to companies limited by guarantee and dormant companies.  
The CLRG returned to the issue of the audit exemption in the course of 2011 and this is set out in the Group’s published 2011 Report. This more recent exa...

227. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if no applications were made under the old regime pursuant to section 60 of the Company Law Enforcement Act 2001 from 2001 to 1 June 2015. (Question 20184/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Registration)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 227 and 230 together.
Section 127 of the Companies Act 1963, as amended by section 60 of the Company Law Enforcement Act 2001, provided that a company had to deliver its annual return to the Registrar of Companies not later than 28 days after the annual return date. 
The purpose of the amendments made by section 60 was to introduce the concept of an annual return date, being a specific d...

228. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if the Company Law Review group recommended that the Registrar of Companies cease the Companies Registration Office, CRO, waiver scheme whereby the CRO adjudicated on late filing issues and that the correct forum is in the District Court or the High Court. (Question 20185/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 224 to 226, inclusive, and 228 together.
The Company Law Review Group’s (‘the CLRG’) review of the audit exemption in 2009 led to recommendations to extend the audit exemption to companies limited by guarantee and dormant companies.  
The CLRG returned to the issue of the audit exemption in the course of 2011 and this is set out in the Group’s published 2011 Report. This more recent exa...

229. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if the Minister for Justice and Equality and-or the President of the High Court and the Courts Service of Ireland have been consulted with regard to the implications on the resources of the Judiciary and the Courts Service of Ireland in respect of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017 as the transfer of these District Court cases to the High Court will cause a huge backlog in the High Court; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20186/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 229, 231 and 232 together.
Section 9 of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017 removes the possibility of a company to apply to the District Court for an extension of its annual return date. Applications may continue to be made to the High Court. The High Court may extend the time for filing of the annual return if it considers the making of such an Order to be ‘just’ in the circum...

230. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the reason section 60 of the Company Law Enforcement Act 2001 was introduced into legislation; if it was introduced to facilitate companies as a result of the introduction of the annual return date regime in March 2001 to facilitate the Companies Registration Office; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20187/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Registration)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 227 and 230 together.
Section 127 of the Companies Act 1963, as amended by section 60 of the Company Law Enforcement Act 2001, provided that a company had to deliver its annual return to the Registrar of Companies not later than 28 days after the annual return date. 
The purpose of the amendments made by section 60 was to introduce the concept of an annual return date, being a specific d...

231. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation her plans with regard to the result that is being sought in the proposed amendment pursuant to section 9 of the Companies Statutory Audits Bill 2017 whereby companies will be still permitted to seek a waiver of late filing fees and extend their annual return date and not lose audit exemption on the same basis as is contained in section 343 provided they satisfy a High Court judge that it is just to do so and that the application be made in the High Court rather than the District Court. (Question 20188/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 229, 231 and 232 together.
Section 9 of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017 removes the possibility of a company to apply to the District Court for an extension of its annual return date. Applications may continue to be made to the High Court. The High Court may extend the time for filing of the annual return if it considers the making of such an Order to be ‘just’ in the circum...

232. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if the intention of the proposed amendment in section 10 of the Companies Statutory Audits Bill 2017 is to allow a company that is late seek a waiver on its late filing fees only and that the District Court is not empowered to extend the annual return date or allow the company available audit exemption section 10. (Question 20189/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 229, 231 and 232 together.
Section 9 of the Companies (Statutory Audits) Bill 2017 removes the possibility of a company to apply to the District Court for an extension of its annual return date. Applications may continue to be made to the High Court. The High Court may extend the time for filing of the annual return if it considers the making of such an Order to be ‘just’ in the circum...

233. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if the Companies Registration Office has collected more than €215 million in late filing fees alone since the fees were substantially increased to the current levels in October 2001. (Question 20190/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Registration)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 233, 234 and 236 together.
The Companies Registration Office (“CRO”) receives late filing fees, which are paid by companies which have filed their annual return late, or by companies which have been struck off the register for non-filing and are subsequently re-instated to the register by filing all outstanding returns which are late.  These moneys are returned directly to the Exchequer ...

234. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if companies are consistently late each year with their statutory filings; if the Companies Registration Office currently takes in on average €10 million per annum on late filing fees representing in or around 10% of companies that are late; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20191/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Registration)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 233, 234 and 236 together.
The Companies Registration Office (“CRO”) receives late filing fees, which are paid by companies which have filed their annual return late, or by companies which have been struck off the register for non-filing and are subsequently re-instated to the register by filing all outstanding returns which are late.  These moneys are returned directly to the Exchequer ...

235. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if the Companies Registration Office has properly assessed the relevance and usefulness of the current statutory filing requirements for the micro company since the commencement into law of the provisions of the Companies Accounting Act 2017. (Question 20192/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Company Law)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The Companies (Accounting) Act 2017 commenced on 9 June 2017 and transposed the 2013 EU Accounting Directive.  Along with other amendments to the Companies Act 2014, the 2017 Act introduced the concept of a ‘micro’ category of company, to exist alongside small, medium and large companies.
The obligation on a micro company is to file financial statements annually with the Companies Registration Office (CRO).  The CRO is ...