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Trade Mission Stateside for St Patrick’s Day

Members of the Irish government are heading stateside as part of a trade mission, a key part of the Government’s St. Patrick’s Day programme and ahead of Ireland’s record-breaking 14 nominations for Irish stories and talent across the Awards, including the history-making nomination for Irish language film ‘An Cailín Ciúin’ (‘The Quiet Girl’).

In 2019, the island of Ireland attracted 1.7 million tourists from the US, c.10% of all American visitors to Europe. The US was Ireland’s most important source of overseas tourism revenue and the second-largest source of tourists in 2019.

American tourists spent €1.6 billion on the island of Ireland in 2019, up +71% since 2014 – an average spend of €916 per US tourist.

While ITTN typically focuses on far-flung destinations, inward tourism forms a critical part of supporting connectivity, particularly air traffic to international markets. With flight frequency ramping up ahead of the summer season and many airlines have or are relaunching routes from Dublin to US destinations.

Enterprise Ireland and the Department of Foreign Affairs

Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin T.D. – together with Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland, Tourism Ireland, the I.D.A., Enterprise Ireland and the Department of Foreign Affairs – will lead a trade mission in Los Angeles to promote the Irish screen industry and Ireland’s cultural power ahead of the Academy Awards this Sunday. 

Minister Martin will seek to strengthen working relationships between the Irish screen sector and some of the world’s largest film studios and production companies, as well as strengthening Ireland’s reputation as a global tourist destination.

Following the remarkable success of ‘An Cailín Cíúin’ (‘The Quiet Girl’), which became the first ever Irish language film nominated for an Academy Award, the Minister will present a special award to the film at the Oscar Wilde event this Thursday. This will be hosted by the US-Ireland Alliance and promotes Irish film and culture in Los Angeles by honouring Irish and Irish-American screen talent.

Minister Martin will also visit Winston House, a recent recipient of Culture Ireland funding. Culture Ireland, which is part of the Minister’s Department, is responsible for promoting Irish arts internationally and provides grants to artists to tour globally.


This year’s trade mission will celebrate these successes while emphasising the business and strategic opportunities these cultural milestones represent. A key example will include ‘The Banshees of Inisherin’, a film boasting a wealth of Irish talent on screen and behind the camera as well as showcasing the landscapes and settings of Achill and the Aran Islands. 

Tourism Ireland will continue to leverage its behind-the-scenes promotional film, using footage shot during the filming – capitalising on the positive exposure for Ireland, bringing the beautiful scenery of the Wild Atlantic Way to the attention of people in Ireland’s main markets and inspiring them to come and visit. 

The promotional film underlines the potential for Irish storytelling in collaboration with international partners. Recent large-scale productions based in Ireland have ranged from Disney’s ‘Disenchanted’, which transformed the village of Enniskerry during production, to this year’s viral hit ‘Cocaine Bear’, shot on location in the Wicklow countryside which was recreated as a US National Park. All projects were in receipt of Section 481 funding, and utilised Irish crews, in addition to spending on local goods and services.

Tourism Ireland is undertaking an extensive and targeted programme of promotional activity in the United States again this year. This includes the new ‘Fill Your Heart with Ireland’ campaign, which will be launching early next month on multiple channels. Minister Martin opened a Tourism Ireland office in Ireland House, San Francisco, in 2022. The expansion of Tourism Ireland’s presence in the US will continue to develop tourism to Ireland from the western region of the US over the coming years.

Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen
Shane Cullen has been managing director of a media production studio for nearly 20 years working on projects for a global clientele. He has worked in the travel industry for over a decade and as a travel journalist since 2015. He is passionate about travel, film & photography. He also has a keen interest in emerging technology.

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