Ireland commits $37.8 million to Industry 4.0

Photo: Gerd Altmann, Pixabay

Ireland has committed to supporting manufacturers in the country to pursue Industry 4.0 strategies.

Minister for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation, Heather Humphreys, announced that the government would contribute €23.5 million ($37.8 million) to the Irish Manufacturing Research Centre as part of its new Industry 4.0 Strategy.

“The Irish Manufacturing Research Centre plays a pivotal role in ensuring that Irish manufacturers are equipped to deal with the changes on the horizon. This funding will allow them to scale up their operations in Rathcoole and Mullingar and position Irish manufacturing at the forefront of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” said Humphreys.

The strategy will assist Irish companies to be able to navigate the adoption of digital technologies in manufacturing. The strategy forms part of the Future Jobs Ireland framework and will structure the government’s approach to advanced manufacturing through to 2025. In a statement, the Humphreys noted that manufacturers will be able to leverage local software and ICT expertise.

“This strategy includes a suite of actions that supports and promotes collaboration across the various stakeholders involved. By working together, we can ensure a bright future for this important sector.”

Humphreys also acknowledged the significant of change that Industry 4.0 would bring to Ireland’s manufacturing sector.

“Digital technologies are transforming the sector. This presents challenges but also opportunities and we must embrace the change to sustain the quality employment it creates right across the country.”

Ireland’s Industry 4.0 strategy will cover action to address challenges including technology adoption, changing business models, and productivity, as well as support for upskilling. The implementation of the strategy will be overseen by an Industry 4.0 stakeholder forum.

The government will also establish Future Manufacturing Ireland, which will coordinate government funded research centres, enabling access by companies.

Similarly, the Australian Federal government’s Australia’s Tech Future strategy, released in December 2018,  highlights the trillions of dollars in potential economic benefits that digital technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, the Internet of Things and quantum computing will bring to benefit all Australians.

Meanwhile, NSW government launched its advanced manufacturing Industry Development Strategy in May 2018. The aim of the strategy is to help strong, existing businesses to transition to Industry 4.0, and create opportunities for new businesses.