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Irish workers now the most productive in the world

Extra.ie logo Extra.ie 09/02/2019 George Morahan
a group of people sitting at a table © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Irish workers are now the most productive in the world, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), adding an average of $99.50 (€87.42) to the economy per hour.

OECD figures show that the Republic of Ireland had the highest rate of labour productivity of any advanced economy in 2017, ahead of Luxembourg ($98.50) and Norway ($83.10).

Ireland also significantly outstripped the US ($72) and the UK ($61.10), its biggest trading partners, in terms of individual productivity, and nearly doubled the OECD average ($54.80).

a person standing next to a building © Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) found that overall labour productivity in Ireland increased by an annual average of 4.5pc from 2000-2016.

Productivity trended downwards in the years preceding the crash before bouncing due to widespread layoffs in the construction, real estate, transport and hospitality sectors.

The CSO has also found that productivity spiked in Ireland in 2014-2016 due to the growing concentration of multinationals resident in the county, shooting up 23.5pc in 2015 alone.

© Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Foreign companies have inflated overall figures, with labour productivity among employees of multinationals growing significantly faster (10.9pc) than at indigenous companies (2.5pc).

In light of the ‘very encouraging’ figures, Cantor Fitzgerald economist Alan McQuaid said Brexit ‘may not turn out as bad as some are predicting.

In an era of increased automation (which of course in some cases can help workers increase productivity), with machine taking over from man/woman, it is a very positive sign that Ireland tops the league in terms of productivity, suggesting that while we can well and truly party, we also can work very hard.’

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