Ireland’s Ocean Economy performing strongly

Ireland’s Ocean Economy performing strongly NUI Galway report
30/06/2017 REPRO FREE:
at Our Ocean Wealth Summit 2017 which brought together innovators, business leaders, marine industry organisations and businesses together in Galway to discuss Ireland’s ocean economy.
Results from the latest SEMRU Report on Ireland’s Ocean Economy show that in 2016, the direct economic value of IrelandÕs ocean economy was Û1.8 billion or approximately 0.9% of GDP, which represents a 20% increase on 2014 levels.
. Photo:Andrew Downes, xposure .

NUI Galway publishes report on Ireland’s Ocean Economy that shows in 2016 the direct economic value of the ocean economy was €1.8 billion representing a 20% increase on 2014

The economic value of Ireland’s Ocean Economy rose by 20% between 2014 and 2016 to €1.8 billion according to a new report by NUI Galway, suggesting that Ireland’s ‘blue economy’ is performing better than the general economy.

NUI Galway’s Socio-Economic Marine Research Unit (SEMRU) has published its fourth report on Ireland’s Ocean Economy, as part of their ongoing process of collection and analysis of marine socio-economic data in Ireland.

Results from the report show that in 2016, the direct economic value of Ireland’s ocean economy was approximately 0.9% of gross domestic product (GDP).

“This report shows Ireland’s ocean economy is experiencing sustained levels of economic growth both across established and emerging marine industries,” said Dr Amaya Vega of SEMRU, based at the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change at NUI Galway.


1/ The ocean economy had a turnover of €5.7 billion in 2016.

2/ The indirect economic value in 2016 amounted to €1.57 billion, with a total direct and indirect value of €3.37 billion, which represents 1.7% of GDP.

3/ The ocean economy provided employment to over 30,000 individuals, full-time equivalents (FTEs) in 2016.

4/ Established Marine Industries had a turnover of €5.3 billion and provided employment to 28,231 FTEs in 2016, representing 93% of the total turnover and 94% of total employment in Ireland’s ocean economy in 2016.

Oil and gas exploration and production, marine aquaculture and tourism and leisure in marine and coastal areas, all experienced a significant increase in activity, with turnover, GVA and employment increasing across the sector in the 2014-2016 period.

The shipping and maritime transport sector also exhibited increases, albeit of a smaller scale, across all three variables.

5/ Emerging Marine Industries had a turnover of €383 million and provided employment to close to 2,000 FTEs representing 7% of the turnover and 6% of employment in Ireland’s ocean economy in 2016.

Advanced marine technology products and services and marine renewable energy experienced the largest increases in turnover and gross value add (GVA), while employment rose in all emerging sectors in the 2014-2016 period.


Dr Stephen Hynes, co-author of the report and director of SEMRU at NUI Galway, said: “Our latest ocean economy figures demonstrate that Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth is moving steadily towards its 2030 targets.

“The latest data demonstrates the growing influence of ocean related economic activity in our economy but it should also be kept in mind that the influence of the ocean on Irish society is even more pervasive than indicated by these figures.

“The ocean also provides key ecosystem services that underpin many of the identified marine industries and is integral not just to the economy, but also to our culture. SEMRU is currently also examining the value of some of these non-market benefits of the ocean.”

The Marine Institute also welcomed publication of the report on Ireland’s Ocean Economy with Dr Peter Heffernan, CEO, commenting: “The very latest figures on Ireland’s Ocean Economy from SEMRU at NUI Galway show that Ireland’s ‘blue economy’ continues to outperform the general economy.

“These very timely marine economic statistics are a key action of the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth Strategy and are essential for evidence-based policy making and decision making.

“It’s really encouraging to see that established sectors are performing so well, and that emerging sectors such as advanced marine technology products and services and renewable energy are experiencing rapid growth in Ireland’s ocean economy.”

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