World eCommerce rank: 30
Geographical size: 69,797 sq km
Population: 4,604,029 (2014)
Gross domestic product: €185.412bn (2014)
Official EU language(s): Irish Gaelic, English
Political system: Parliamentary Republic
EU Member country: Since 1 January 1973
Currency: (€) Euro, since 1 January 1999
Schengen area member?: No
Three international airports and membership of the EU have established the Republic as an active participant in cross-border trade across the EU, Northern Ireland and further afield.
Northern Ireland, while being politically and economically part of the UK, is geographically closer to the Republic, sharing a common border and heritage. Cross-border trade is an important way of life for the communities both sides of the border. As such, it is important for any merchant looking to trade into the Republic to understand the differences as well as the opportunities.
The Republic’s top trading partners are:
The country’s economy is driven largely by foreign direct investment, a well-educated workforce and a government keen to reduce its borrowing deficit. Key industries include technology, financial services, pharmaceuticals, engineering and clean technology.
The UK, being the closest country geographically, is a strong trading partner while the influence of global, US technology brands impact the import / export figures.
A large proportion of the population live in rural areas, including smaller towns and villages. The capital city, Dublin, is by-far the largest conurbation with over 1 million inhabitants.
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