The capital of Ireland, Dublin is the economic and educational centre of the country, and its largest concentration of population with 1.8 million people in the Greater Dublin Area. This figure is expected to reach 2.2 million by 2031. While the population of Dublin City has increased at a modest 10% in the last twenty years to 525,000, there has been a significant 24% rise for the Dublin Region and a remarkable 63% growth in the Mid-East Region in the same period.
The economic fabric of this east-coast port city is a mixture of traditional industries—food processing, textiles, brewing and distilling—and the modern sectors of electronics and IT, financial services and logistics. Dublin is a home to all of the world’s top 10 IT and telecommunications companies and nine of its top 10 software companies. Until the global crisis triggered in 2008, Ireland’s ‘Celtic Tiger’ economy witnessed a period of rapid expansion, reflected in construction and infrastructure projects in the Dublin area. There was also a sharp rise in immigration.
Agricultural land, often far from the city, was developed for housing, resulting in a rise in car dependency and long distance commuting. Dublin City Council hopes to encourage the development of vacant and underused land within the city to fulfil housing needs. There has been a 30% rise in private apartments in the inner city since the 80s and new housing and office space created in the regeneration of the Liffey Docklands.
Another key part of the capital’s economy is tourism. As a major world cultural centre, Dublin attracted 3.9 million overseas visitors in 2013, generating €1.4 billion in revenue. Along with the many museums, art galleries, parks and historic landmarks, Dublin’s pubs are a famous part of the city’s life.