Manufacturing has traditional been recognised as playing a fundamental role within the development process of an economy. This is partly due to its ability to create employment and wealth, together with the induced multiplier effects which make manufacturing enterprises a crucial element in national planning strategies. This study examines the role of the IDA in promoting Irish Industrial Policy and in particular their encouragement of Foreign Direct Investment and its contribution to Ireland<i economic growth in the 1990's. In order to have an understanding of Irish Industrial Policy and the contribution of Foreign Direct Investment, this study traced Ireland's industrial policy from its beginnings in the 1920's through to the present day. Chapter one, briefly examines the emergence of Ireland as a Free State and the protectionist measures which ensued. Chapter two, looks at the changes in industrial policy as Ireland moved towards free trade in the 1960/70's.
Chapter three, reviews the re-evaluation of industrial policy and the tightening of incentive measures for Foreign Direct Investment. Chapter four, examines how the industrial policy changes of the mid-eighties finally led to Foreign Direct Investment contributing to the growth of the Irish economy.