Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton T.D. launched the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) Report for Ireland for 2011. The report shows that there has been an increase in early stage entrepreneurial activity in 2011. As a result more people started new businesses in 2011 than in the previous year. The GEM report estimates that approximately 2,200 enterprising individuals were setting up a new business each month during 2011.
The GEM report is supported by Enterprise Ireland, Forfás, the European Social Fund and the Department of Justice and Equality, under the Equality for Women Measure 2007-2013, and also by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. The authors of the report are Paula Fitzsimons of Fitzsimons Consulting, who is the National GEM Co-ordinator, and Dr Colm O’Gorman, Professor of Entrepreneurship, DCU Business School.
Findings of the 2011 GEM report indicate that almost three quarters of these entrepreneurs expect to become employers. While the majority of the businesses will remain small, the employment impact of these new enterprises is significant when taken together. The GEM report also highlights the relative ambitious growth aspirations of a significant minority of these entrepreneurs in Ireland compared to other countries across the EU and OECD.
Welcoming the report, Minister Bruton said: ‘It is successful businesses, not Government, that create jobs. That is why the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs includes a series of new measures to support entrepreneurs and new start-ups, and to drive continued growth in this critical sector of the economy. In this regard I am pleased to note the results of the GEM research, which indicate that more people were starting new businesses in 2011 than were a year earlier. It is good to see increased numbers of enterprising individuals determined to turn difficult circumstances into an opportunity for personal and commercial success.
‘The GEM report sets out clearly the many positives around entrepreneurship in Ireland 2011. It is also very clear that there are areas where challenges remain. My determination is through the Action Plan for Jobs to provide further support for the Irish entrepreneurial community to generate even greater numbers of innovative entrepreneurs to create strong, export led businesses in the coming year’.
The 2011 Report also examines the gender aspect of entrepreneurial activity in Ireland and indicates that there are two and a half times as many men as women who are entrepreneurs.
Kathleen Lynch TD, Minister for Disability, Equality, Mental Health & Older People, welcomed the focus on the potential of women as entrepreneurs in the 2011 GEM report and the inclusion of profiles of enterprising women, who had recently set up new businesses throughout the country.
‘I very much welcome the new strategy for female entrepreneurs to be delivered by Enterprise Ireland, which was launched recently by Minister Bruton. This new strategy complements the work of the County Enterprise Boards and a range of initiatives for women entrepreneurs being funded by the European Social Fund under the Equality for Women Measure, administered by the Department of Justice and Equality. The challenge now is not only to get more women to start new businesses, but to encourage more of them to start innovative businesses focused on exports, growth and job creation’, she said.
Commenting on the report Tom Hayes, Head of Micro Enterprise and Small Business at Enterprise Ireland said: ‘Starting and growing enterprises is fundamental to achieving regional economic growth. In this context it is heartening that the GEM Report demonstrates that a significantly higher proportion of Irish entrepreneurs are engaged in medium or high technology sectors (11%) compared to averages across the OECD (7.3%) and EU (7.9%). These are the kind of companies with the potential to become innovative, export-focussed businesses with the capability to grow internationally and create value add jobs in the Irish economy’.
Declan Hughes, Manager of the Enterprise and Trade Division, Forfás, said: ‘It is encouraging to see positive trends in entrepreneurship and to see ambitious targets for job creation. There are increasing numbers setting up new businesses, with 71% of early stage entrepreneurs expecting to become employers. It is most encouraging that a significant minority (20%) of early stage entrepreneurs expect to employ 20 or more people after five years. This rate is well ahead of EU and OECD averages. These positive trends, though significant, are but one part of the picture, with significant challenges to entrepreneurship also existing. The report finds an increase in those who are motivated to entrepreneurship by necessity (30% in 2011 and up from 19% in 2008 and 6% in 2007). There are also fewer investors and a decline in the amount being invested. There is a need to continue to improve the perceived attractiveness of entrepreneurship as a career option and of perceived entrepreneurial opportunities.”
At least 85% of electrical and electronic waste generated in the European Union will have to be recycled by 2020 under new rules that took effect yesterday.
The update to a decade-old Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive introduces a collection target of 45 % of electronic equipment sold that will apply from 2016 and, as a second step from 2019, a target of 65 % of equipment sold, or 85 % of electronic waste generated. Member States will be able to choose which one of these two equivalent ways to measure the target they wish to report. From 2018, the Directive will be extended from its current restricted scope to all categories of electronic waste, subject to an impact assessment beforehand.
The Directive gives Member States the tools to fight the illegal export of waste more effectively. Illegal shipments of WEEE are a serious problem, especially when they are disguised as legal shipments of used equipment to circumvent EU waste treatment rules. The new Directive will oblige exporters to test whether equipment works or not, and provide documents on the nature of shipments that could be thought illegal.
Another expected improvement is the reduction of administrative burdens through harmonisation of national registration and reporting requirements. Requirements by Member States' registers for producers of e-waste will now be aligned more closely.
Currently only one third of electrical and electronic waste in the EU is separately collected within the documented system. The existing EU collection target is 4 kg of WEEE per capita, representing about 2 million tons per year, out of around 10 million tonnes of WEEE generated annually in the EU. By 2020, it is estimated that the volume of WEEE will increase to 12 million tons. The final target of the new Directive, an ambitious 85% of all WEEE generated, will ensure that in 2020 around 10 million tons, or roughly 20kg per capita, will be separately collected in the EU.
14 Feb. 2014: Deadline for EU countries to adopt the WEEE Directive into national law.
2016: At least 45% of e-goods sold must be recovered.
2019: At least 65% of e-good sold must be collected, or 85% of overall e-waste
2021: Deadline for Bulgaria, Romania and other new EU countries to comply.