Enterprise Ireland saw exports by companies it supports increase by 12% to a record €27.29 billion last year.
This is the highest ever level of growth for Enterprise Ireland-backed companies in export value, and strong increases were experienced across almost all sectors in 2021.
Exports from Enterprise Ireland supported companies last year grew across all territories.
Speaking in relation to the results Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar said that theses are really impressive results and a testament to the hard work and resilience of thousands of Irish entrepreneurs and their staff across the country.
"It is quite remarkable that despite the headwinds we faced last year, not least the realisation of Brexit and the continuing effects of the pandemic, Irish business managed to have a record year for exports - 12% up on the previous year. Behind these figures today are thousands of jobs in every county in the country," he said.
Despite the uncertainty caused by the changed trading relationship between the UK and Ireland, exports to this market totalled €8.43 billion.
This marks a rise of 15% and the UK accounts for almost one-third (31%) of our export trade.
Diversification has been a key focus of Enterprise Ireland’s work in recent years, and exports by client companies to the Eurozone increased by 10% last year, totalling €6.04 billion and accounting for over one-fifth (22%) of total exports.
“We’re working hard to diversify our export base and I’m glad to see exports up so substantially in the Eurozone and North America. We also saw significant increases in our smaller markets like the Middle East, Africa, India and Latin America," Varadkar added.
"We will continue to promote Irish products and services in new and exciting markets, forging new relationships and opportunities."
The next largest market was North America, which saw a 14% increase, bringing total exports to €4.87 billion.
This important market, our third largest, now accounts for 18% of total exports from Enterprise Ireland supported companies.
Growth was seen across almost all economic sectors in 2021 and food exports increased by 6%, accounting for over €12.91 billion or 47% of total exports.
Welcoming the results, Leo Clancy, CEO, Enterprise Ireland, said that these exceptionally strong export results follow on from the record number of net new jobs created in companies supported by Enterprise Ireland last year.
"There has been positive growth across most sectors and regions, and Enterprise Ireland clients contributed €31bn to the domestic economy last year in employment and in purchases of materials and services," Clancy said.
"While the UK remains our largest trading partner it is good to see that our strategy to grow exports in other key markets, especially the Eurozone, continues to pay dividends.”