Pharmaceutical services company Wasdell Group is to establish a packaging, testing and distribution facility in Dundalk, creating 300 jobs over five years. The 70,000 sq ft greenfield site will be built on land at Mullagharlin at a cost of €30m (£26.5m).

It will act as Wasdell’s EU hub for qualified persons in release, analytical testing, primary and secondary pharmaceutical packaging and distribution, with the project being supported by the Irish government through IDA Ireland.

Minister of state for employment and small business Pat Breen believes the proposed investment is “a great vote of confidence in what Ireland has to offer”.

“This project builds on the tremendous success we have had, in bringing new foreign project to Dundalk which has helped transform the economic standing of the town over a relatively short period”.

Wasdell Group managing director Martin Tedham said: “Due to the rate of growth we are experiencing and the ongoing requirement to maintain capacity, a site in Ireland will be a means to facilitate this, as well as an exciting opportunity for the group and specifically the Wasdell Packaging division.

“We have always had a strong customer base in Ireland and are certain that this trend will continue with the impending Brexit situation as companies typically from the UK and USA look to securing a base to service their European markets.”

IDA Ireland chief executive Martin Shanahan added: “The border region is a key target regional location for investment for us. The company will add to the growing cluster of life sciences companies in Ireland.

“The availability of this range of clinical and pharmaceutical services will increase the attractiveness of Ireland as an international base for early stage specialty Biopharma companies. It an ideal example of the type of Brexit-linked opportunity IDA is working hard to secure.”