The Irish State - State-Sponsored Bodies

There are approximately 100 State-sponsored bodies employing about 75,000 people. They are engaged in a wide range of activities, but the major organisations operate in the following areas:

  • Public Utilities

    The Electricity Supply Board is responsible for all electricity generation and supply. An Post and Telecom Éireann provide mail and telecommunications services respectively. Bord Gáis (Irish Gas Board) is responsible for the supply of natural gas. RTÉ, the radio and television network, runs the national television and radio service.

  • Transport

    The public road and rail transport system is operated by the CIE group of companies.Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) operates the nationwide railway system for passengers and freight, including the Dublin Area Rapid Transit (DART) network. Bus Átha Cliath (Dublin Bus) operates urban bus services in the Greater Dublin area. Bus Éireann (Irish Bus) operates a network of bus services outside Dublin city. Aer Rianta manages international airports at Dublin, Cork and Shannon. Aer Lingus, the Irish international airline, provides international air services.

  • Other Trading Companies

    IFI manufactures agricultural fertilizers. The Irish National Petroleum Corporation deals in the international oil market and operates its own refinery. Bord na Móna, the Irish Peat Development Board, is responsible for the development and processing of Ireland’s peat resources. Coillte Teo. is responsible for the commercial functions of the forest service.

  • Promotional Agencies

    Forbairt is the agency responsible for developing indigenous industry. The Industrial Development Agency - Ireland is the agency responsible for attracting foreign investment into Ireland. Bord Tráchtála (The Irish Export Board) promotes Irish products in export markets and Bord Fáilte (Irish Tourist Board) markets Ireland as an international tourist destination.

Other State-sponsored bodies are engaged in the areas of education and research, public administration, fisheries and corporate finance. Within general policy guidelines laid down by the Government, State-sponsored bodies have significant autonomy. Although the Government or an individual Minister usually appoints members to the Boards or Councils of the bodies, they are not subject to detailed Ministerial control over day-to-day matters.

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