World Trade Center New Orleans Leads Trade Mission to Ireland
NEW ORLEANS – This week, the World Trade Center New Orleans is leading a business delegation on a trade mission to three major cities in Ireland (Dublin, Galway and Limerick), focusing on technology and health sciences. This is the WTCNO’s first trade mission since partnering with GNO, Inc., in 2022. The trip continues the WTCNO’s long-history of hosting trade missions to foreign markets.
The trip comes on the heels of a visit to New Orleans last month by the Ambassador of Ireland to the United States, Geraldine Byrne Nason, who met with members of the delegation. The WTCNO has worked closely with IDA Ireland, the agency responsible for inward foreign direct investment into Ireland, to coordinate the trade mission.
During the trip, participants are learning about expansion opportunities for Louisiana-based businesses, meeting with leading Irish companies to lay the foundation for business attraction efforts to Louisiana, learning more about how Ireland has successfully grown its economy and exploring B2B opportunities. The visit will include meetings with key government officials and business leaders, site visits to local facilities and research institutions, meetings with U.S. companies that have invested in Ireland and presentations from Irish companies that could benefit from assets in Louisiana.
“We very much look forward to welcoming this business delegation to Ireland,” said Ambassador Byrne Nason in a press release. “We see great potential in our business relationship with Louisiana. The U.S. is one of Ireland’s largest and most important trading partners, and Ireland is the ninth largest source of [foreign direct investment] into the U.S. We want to grow this mutually beneficial relationship with states like Louisiana, with which Ireland shares such strong historic people-to-people ties.”
Currently, trade and investment between Ireland and the United States is at an all-time high. Furthermore, Ireland ranks as a top 10 location for both inward and outward foreign direct investment with the United States. In Louisiana, nearly $116 billion in goods flow between the state and Ireland. For example, in 2020, Irish-based gaming company Keywords Studios acquired New Orleans-based High Voltage Software for $50 million.
“Over the past 30 years, the Irish economy has experienced transformational economic growth,” said Harrison Crabtree, director of the WTCNO, in a press release. “I am excited to meet with leading Irish companies that have helped drive this growth and explore expansion opportunities to Louisiana. Trade missions such as this one serve as a critical tool for creating economic prosperity across the state and connecting Louisiana businesses with a global audience.”
Ireland shares traits with Louisiana, including a skilled workforce, low business costs and attractive tax structures. Both locations also are emerging as leading regions for innovation companies, serving as attractive alternatives to legacy tech hubs. These similarities make Ireland an ideal business partner for Louisiana. Furthermore, U.S. companies choose Ireland as an entry point to Europe (the world’s largest single-market area).
“From the Irish Channel to the Emerald Isle, it seems only fitting with our rich, shared cultural history to have the World Trade Center of New Orleans’s first trade mission under the operational partnership with GNO, Inc., be to Ireland,” said Board Chair of the World Trade Center New Orleans, Kristi App, in a press release. “With its vibrant economy, especially in the tech and healthcare sectors, the trade mission to Ireland creates opportunities for Louisiana companies to build relationships that will result in increased trade between our regions.”