Irish firms still committed to energy efficiency research

In spite of the tough economic climate, a significant proportion of Irish companies intend to carry on investing in research and development, particularly when it comes to boosting their energy efficiency levels, a new study has found.

Research carried out across Europe by accountancy firm KPMG found that firms all over the continent are currently suffering from a lack of confidence.

While the Czech Republic and Greece were found to have the least optimistic expectations over business activity and revenues over the short-term future, Ireland’s manufacturing sector was also found to be lacking in confidence.

However, the study also found that, with energy prices a key concern for most firms in the sector, many are set to carry on investing in developing ways to cut their fuel bills while also reducing their carbon emission levels.

“Of particular concern is the ongoing challenge of comparatively high energy prices and exchange rate issues,” KPMG head of consumer and industrial markets in Ireland, Roger Gillespie, said.

“However, Irish manufacturers may also take some comfort in significantly lower reported-input prices, a lower than average fall in projected capacity utilisation and lower planned cuts in R&D expenditure than many of our EU competitors.”

Earlier this month, Limerick-based Wind Energy Direct (WED) reported a growth in interest in turbines as businesses look to reduce their energy bills.

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