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Taoiseach to host retail roundtable on online trading via live webcast

Taoiseach Enda Kenny will tomorrow host a discussion with Irish businesses to explore the growth, challenges and potential jobs opportunities arising from trading online. This is the first time such a meeting will be webcast live so that this discussion can be shared with others interested in the conversation, from across the country.

The Taoiseach has invited ten businesses from across Ireland to hear their experiences of the challenges and opportunities associated with selling online. These companies have a variety of online trading experience, from those who have no retail component to their online presence to those that have fully-functioning online stores trading internationally. Some of the companies invited have undertaken training courses for getting online including Activating Dublin, and Clicktailing.

Topics for discussion are expected to include the potential which online trade offers, barriers to firms becoming active online, and the relevant State supports. It is hoped that the meeting will inform current initiatives underway as part of the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs 2013 and the National Digital Strategy as well as the preparation of next year’s planning.

Speaking in advance of the event, the Taoiseach said:

Last year we spent €3.7 billion online but 70% of this went to retailers abroad. An Irish person typically spends €116 per month online and this figure is only set to grow further.

Trading online offers a real and growing opportunity for Irish retailers to market their goods and services more broadly, make more sales both here and abroad, and retain or grow staff numbers. We are taking steps, such as the new Trading Online Voucher Scheme to encourage more retailers to get selling online and we need to see what more needs to be done.

I want to hear directly from retailers their experiences and needs, which is such a valuable part of getting our supports right. In broadcasting online, I want to start as broad a conversation as possible about the progress we can make in this area and help create more jobs in this country.

Read the full press release