The Northern Ireland economy bounced back from the Seagate Technology shutdown with a major jobs announcement in Newry yesterday.
Norbrook Technology, the pharmaceutical company, unveiled plans for an £83m investment which it said could create up to 293 jobs between now and 2013.
The securing of the project, which is being backed by Invest NI to the tune of £3m, was hailed by Economy Minister Nigel Dodds as "a great achievement".
The Department of Enterprise said the jobs being created at Norbrook would include 191 "high calibre" research posts.
It said the project was designed to enable Norbrook to develop a number of new veterinary pharmaceutical products for the global export market.
Mr Dodds said that the investment by Norbrook, which he described as one of Northern Ireland's most successful indigenous companies, could easily have gone outside Northern Ireland.
He said: "Norbrook's ongoing investment in research and development is a key factor in its success and undoubtedly the quality and availability of graduates in Northern Ireland has influenced the company's decision to invest further here.
"An investment of this scale will deliver significant benefits, not just for the company and for the pharmaceutical sector, but for the economy as a whole."
Norbrook's executive chairman, Lord Ballyedmond, said the company's goal was to establish a centre of R&D excellence which would help the company in its work of developing patented products.
He added: "Norbrook has built its reputation in the large animal market, particularly cattle, and while retaining a focus on this we are now keen to develop a bigger presence in the pet market."
Norbrook currently employs 880 at its facility in Newry, and manufactures pharmaceutical products which are sold in more than 100 countries.
A strategic priority for the company is to increase sales in the lucrative US pet market.