Another piece of Ireland's digital strategy jigsaw has fallen into place with the publication of the Digital Hub Development Agency Bill 2002.

The proposed new Digital Hub Development Agency will be a statutory body consisting of 14 members, including a chairperson (to be appointed by the minister for public enterprise) and a chief executive. The agency will build on the format successfully employed in Ireland in developing Dublin's Docklands, where the International Financial Services Centre is located.

As part of the agency's establishment, Dublin Media Development Limited (DMDL), the entity currently charged with developing the Digital Hub, will be dissolved with effect from the agency's date of establishment and the agency will assume all rights, property, obligations and liabilities of DMDL.

The Digital Hub project will involve:

  • the deployment of broadband infrastructure;

  • physical redevelopment of the area set out in the bill (which may be extended by ministerial order);

  • promotion of educational initiatives; and

  • the establishment of a range of business support facilities.

The project underscores the government's ongoing commitment to development of the information and communication technology sector in Ireland.

Other participants in the Digital Hub project include IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Dublin City Council and Media Lab Europe, the European research partner of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab.

It is hoped that this draft legislation will be enacted (subject to any amendments) before the end of 2002.

For further information on this topic please contact David Sanfey at A & L Goodbody by telephone (+353 1 649 2000) or by fax (+353 1 649 2649) or by email ([email protected]).