Germany's exports and imports drop in February

Germany’s exports were worth €88.7bn in February 2013, a fall of 2.8pc over February 2012, according to provision figures released today by Destatis, the Federal Statistical Office. Over the same period, the country’s imports fell by 5.9pc to €71.9bn. After calendar and seasonal adjustment, Destatis said exports decreased by 1.5pc and imports were down by 3.8pc compared with January 2013. Germany’s foreign trade balance showed a surplus of €16.8bn in February 2013. A year previously, the surplus had amounted to €14.9bn. According to provisional results of the Deutsche Bundesbank, the current account of the balance of payments showed a surplus of €16bn in February 2013, which included the balance of…

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Largest ever group of TY students to head to China

University College Cork (UCC) and Shanghai University have arranged a visit to China for 90 Transition Year (TY) students from 32 schools across Ireland. The demand for places on the Easter Camp programme to Shanghai, which runs from 2 to 16 April, was extraordinary according to Professor Fan Hong, director of School of Asian Studies, the Irish Institute of Chinese Studies and the Confucius Institute at UCC. “Beyond the enthusiasm demonstrated by the students themselves, many of their parents were incredibly eager to give their sons and daughters an opportunity they never had – to experience Chinese culture and society first hand,” she said. “A series of visits to some…

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Dalian to open ship recycling centre in Chinese port

Irish-owned CEMS-Dalian (CEMS-D) is to develop a centre for ship dismantling and recycling in Zhuanghe near Dalian, one of the busiest ports in the world, located north-east of Beijing. A delegation from Dalian, including city officials and industrialists, is in Ireland this week to meet with government ministers and senior level government officials as well as leading academics in environmental science and maritime engineering. All manner of ship dismantling waste, including hazardous materials, will be recycled or disposed of to the highest standards of environmental safety at the new centre. “We have formed a strategic alliance with a private Chinese company to design, develop and operate a state of the…

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Bewley’s

Bewley’s will return to the home shopping channel QVC this St Patrick’s Day for the fourth time. According to the Tea Association of America, 2011 was the 20th consecutive year that consumer purchases of tea increased. In 2011 over three billion gallons of tea were consumed. On 17 March, QVC will once again showcase Bewley’s to over 98 million US households. “Given that over 98 million US viewers tune in to QVC, we are delighted to be asked back again for the fourth time to showcase Bewley’s to our US customers,” said Mark Saunders of Bewley’s. “Our export market is important to us and this appearance on QVC will enable…

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Minister Brian Hayes with John Newell, managing director, and Conor O’Riain, head of new markets and products, Ecocem Ireland

Ecocem Ireland said today that it is planning to create 61 jobs as part of a new three year, €19m investment programme that will see the company expand its exports of eco-friendly cement. The announcement was made at the official opening of the company’s new facility at Dublin Port. The plant will be used to bag Ecocem’s eco-friendly cement, which, according to the company, has a 50pc lower carbon footprint than traditional cement. The company said the new plant will lead to the creation of 25 direct jobs and 36 indirect jobs in other, directly-associated and Irish-based suppliers. The €19m investment includes a €5m investment in machinery and infrastructure already made, and will…

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Kerry Group’s preliminary results for 2012, showing double-digit growth, maintain the strong momentum demonstrated in recent years, according to Davy Research. Following its €186m investment in research and development during the year, sales revenue increased by 10.3pc to reach €5.8bn, while trading profit climbed 10.8pc to €555m. Kerry Group chief executive Stan McCarthy said: “We are pleased to report a strong group-wide performance in 2012 and 11.3pc growth in adjusted earnings per share. “Our 1 Kerry Business Transformation Programme is well underway which through exploiting the technologies and expertise of the organisation will drive our future growth. We continue to invest in our technologies, innovation and nutritional expertise, and also…

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Canadian construction company Kidco Construction Canada has confirmed that it will be actively recruiting for over 100 positions at Jobs Expo 2013, an employment and recruitment fair, which will be held in Dublin’s Croke Park on Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 February. Kidco Construction operates the largest fleet of earthmoving equipment in Southern Alberta, and is a full service contractor specialising in highways, municipal public works, residential, commercial land development, trucking, basement foundations and underground utility installations. Kidco Construction is looking to fill the following positions: Single and twin engine scrapers (613, 621 631, 651, 627, 637 and 657) Graders Excavators  (200- 385 Caterpillar; 350, 470, 870 John Deere; 200…

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Irish Film 'The Summit'

An Irish documentary about the K2 mountain tragedy in August 2008 which killed 11 climbers, ‘The Summit,’ has been snapped up by a major US distributor at the Sundance International Film Festival 2013. The distributor, Sundance Selects , is a new theatrical and video-on-demand film label that provides a national platform in the US for independent films and documentaries will be available in about 40 million homes. A subsidiary of IFC which is owned by American media giant AMC, it secured the US distribution rights over the weekend. AMC is the studio behind the TV show, ‘The Walking Dead,’ which is shown on RTE2 in Ireland and IFC previously produced ‘Touching The…

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Brite:Bill makes senior appointments and expands in the US Oli Cavanagh

Dublin-based Brite:Bill has made a number of appointments to its management team and expanded its presence in the US market. Founded in 2010, Brite:Bill provides customer communications products which enhance the presentation capabilities of existing billing systems for mobile operators. Liam Davis has joined Brite:Bill as chief operations officer and chief financial officer (CFO) after spending 13 years in Norkom where he was CFO.  Norkom, which merged with BAE Systems in 2011, provides risk, fraud and compliance solutions to financial services and government clients across the globe. Davis has 15 years’ experience in financial, operational and commercial management. He is responsible for Brite:Bill’s financial planning as well as the daily operation of…

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Dublin-based provider of analytics software and services Presidion is to expand into the UK, and plans to recruit 20 graduates over the next three years. Originally SPSS Ireland, Presidion was set up in 1995 and has evolved to have over 500 accounts and thousands of customers in Ireland. It is a key strategic partner of IBM in the field of predictive analytics and currently employs 14 people. Minister of State for Small Business John Perry TD announced the re-branding of Presidion, its expansion into the UK market and the graduate programme. In his speech, he stressed the significance and importance of growth in the Irish indigenous economy, and that Presidion…

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