Kilkenny had one of the fewest Industrial Development Agency site visits in the first nine months of this year when compared to other counties in the South-East.
The IDA carried out six site visits in Kilkenny up to September of this year and this compares with Waterford's nine and Tipperary and Carlow's seven site visits.
Fianna Fáil's Mary Butler asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Frances Fitzgerald, for the number of site visits the IDA has made to Kilkenny and other South-East counties in 2017.
Deputy Butler said her question was in view of the fact that the unemployment figures in the South-East are still 2.5% above the national average.
Minister Fitzgerald: “This Government is strongly committed to regional development and my Department and its agencies are working towards ambitious targets to ensure that employment and investment is evenly distributed across the country.
IDA Ireland's strategy for 2015-2019 includes a commitment to increase foreign direct investment (FDI) in every region outside Dublin by 30% to 40% by 2019.
IDA Ireland markets Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary South, Waterford and Wexford as part of the South East region.
The Minister added: “Both these regions have performed strongly in recent years in terms of employment growth.
“In the South-East, an additional 33,600 people were in employment by the end of quarter 2 of this year compared to the end of quarter 1 in 2012.
“While significant progress has been made in reducing unemployment in both regions, more work remains to be done.
“That is why IDA Ireland continues, on a daily basis, to highlight the benefits of expanding or locating in these regions to its client base in order to boost job creation further.”
Figures on the number of IDA Ireland sponsored site visits in the first nine months of 2017 also revealed that Kilkenny did not have the fewest number of visits, that honour went to Wexford which had just two.
Just last month the chief executive of the IDA said Kilkenny has two Institute of Technologies which is delivering a “flow of skills” after a local TD expressed concern the county was disadvantaged in terms of job creation by its lack of a third level institution.