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Enterprise Ireland
Annual Report and Accounts
2007

Corporate Governance

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Enterprise Ireland is a body corporate established by the Industrial Development (Enterprise Ireland) Act 1998. As a statutory body, it is endowed with a separate legal personality and perpetual succession. It also has the capacity to own property, make contracts, sue and be sued in its corporate name. The members of the Board of Enterprise Ireland constitute the members of the agency.

The agency operates in accordance with the provisions of the Industrial Development Acts 1986–2003 and under the aegis of the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment who is empowered to provide funds to the agency to enable it to discharge its obligations; to issue general policy directives; and to seek information on the agency’s activities.

In addition to its own governing legislation, the agency is also required to comply with a range of other statutory (National and EU) and administrative requirements. In particular, it has put in place procedures to ensure compliance with the following specific requirements:

Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies

Enterprise Ireland has put in place procedures to ensure that it fully complies with this Code of Practice.

Guidelines for the Appraisal and Management of Capital Expenditure Proposals

Enterprise Ireland has well-established, robust procedures for the appraisal and management of capital expenditure projects arising under its capital grants programmes. These procedures comply with the principles set out in the guidelines.

Freedom of Information Acts, 1997 & 2003

Regulations were signed into law on 30th March 2001, providing for the extension of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI) to Enterprise Ireland. This Act provides a legal right to individuals to obtain access to information held by public bodies, to the greatest extent possible, consistent with the public interest and the right to privacy. However, the Act provides strong protections for individuals or companies who supply information to Enterprise Ireland that is confidential, commercially sensitive or personal. Such information cannot be released under FOI without those who supplied the information being consulted. There is also a right of appeal to the Information Commissioner, who is an independent authority for FOI matters. Further information on the implementation of FOI at Enterprise Ireland is available from the Government Relations and FOI Office, Enterprise Ireland, Glasnevin, Dublin 9 and is also available on our website at www.enterprise-ireland.com.

Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005

In accordance with the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005, Enterprise Ireland has put in place procedures to comply with the provisions of the Act and has prepared a safety statement that encompasses all of the aspects affecting staff and visitor welfare.

Worker Participation (State Enterprise) Act, 1988

Enterprise Ireland is not a designated body for the purposes of the Act. However, Enterprise Ireland has put consultative processes in place involving the Trade Unions representing staff.

Prompt Payment of Accounts Act, 1997

Enterprise Ireland comes under the remit of the Prompt Payment of Accounts Act, 1997, which came into effect on 2nd January 1998, and the European Communities (Late Payment in Commercial Transactions) Regulations 2002, which came into effect on 7th August 2002. It is the policy of Enterprise Ireland to ensure that all invoices are paid promptly. Specific provisions are in place to enable all invoices to be tracked and to ensure that payments are made before their due date for interest and charges purposes. Invoices are logged daily and weekly payment runs are carried out to ensure prompt payment. These controls are designed to provide reasonable, though not absolute assurance against non-compliance with the Act and Regulations.

Enterprise Ireland enters into written contracts in a number of areas. The payment period applicable for these contracts ranges from 1 to 14 days.

During 2007 there were no late payments.

Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995

Enterprise Ireland was brought within the scope of the Ethics in Public Office (Prescribed Public Bodies, Designated Directorships of Public Bodies and Designated Positions in Public Bodies) Regulations 2004 (S.I. No 699 of 2004) with effect from 1st January 2005 and has put in place procedures to comply with the Act.

Data Protection Acts, 1988 and 2003

Enterprise Ireland is registered as a data controller under the Data Protection Acts. Data protection is concerned with the protection of the individual’s fundamental right to privacy and to exercise control over how personal information is used. Applications in relation to personal information may be made under either the Freedom of Information Acts or under the Data Protection Acts. Further information is available from the Government Relations and FOI Office, Enterprise Ireland, Glasnevin, Dublin 9.

Employment Equality Acts, 1998 and 2004

Enterprise Ireland is committed to a policy of equal opportunity and adopts a positive approach to equality in the organisation. Enterprise Ireland operates a number of schemes that provide staff with options in relation to meeting their career and personal needs, such as job sharing, study leave, educational programmes and career breaks.

Commission of the European Union

In 2007, Enterprise Ireland administered a range of programmes which are eligible for co-funding by EU Structural Funds under the Productive Sector Operational Programme, Employment and Human Resource Development Operational Programme, and the two Regional Operational Programmes for the Southern and Eastern and BMW regions.

Official Languages Act 2003

Enterprise Ireland comes under the remit of the Official Languages Act 2003 which was signed into law on 14th July 2003 to provide a statutory framework for the delivery of services through the Irish language. In accordance with Section 10 of the Act, this Annual Report is published simultaneously in Irish and English.

Environmental Policy Statement

Enterprise Ireland’s activities impact on the environment in two main ways: Running the organisation: Through an Environmental Management programme, Enterprise Ireland manages the environmental impacts relevant to its activities. By the establishment and review of environmental objectives and targets, Enterprise Ireland aims to continuously improve its environmental performance in areas of its activities which are appropriate and economically viable. The Enterprise Ireland Environmental Policy is available to interested parties on request. Supporting Irish Business: Enterprise Ireland is pro-active in stimulating high environmental standards among client companies.

Disclosure Policy on Payments and Investments

It is Enterprise Ireland’s policy to make information available on Financial Support payments that have been made to client companies. A supplement to this Report, listing all such payments made by Enterprise Ireland in 2007, is available on request.

A schedule of investments at cost as at 31st December 2007 showing individual amounts in excess of €0.635 million is disclosed in Appendix 1 attached to the Financial Statements.

 

Frank Ryan signature

Frank Ryan,
Chief Executive Officer

 

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