By Ben Simmons

New Irish government-backed initiative Connectireland is calling on British businesses to expand into Ireland in a bid to kick-start the economy and get the country back into work.

Unveiled by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny as part of its Action Plan for Jobs 2012, Connectireland aims to create 5,000 jobs over the next five years by incentivising people around the world to bring small and medium-sized international business people to Ireland.

People who use their connections to help create new jobs for Ireland will receive a minimum of Euro 1,500 for each new job created, up to a maximum of 100 jobs.
Hollywood actor Martin Sheen, Irish actress Saoirse Ronan and Irish-American dancer Michael Flatley have endorsed the initiative in an inspirational new video urging the 70 million people worldwide claiming Irish ancestry to use their connections in getting Ireland back to work.

Connectireland, the brainchild of founder and entrepreneur Terry Clune, complements the work of IDA Ireland, a government agency responsible for securing foreign investment.

"We are working closely with the government to help attract foreign investment to our shores and are encouraged by the enthusiasm and excitement this scheme has so far generated,'" said Terry.

"Connectireland is a smart and unique way of fighting the recession by harnessing the power of global communications. We are calling on UK businesses planning to expand within Europe to locate in Ireland."

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