Facebook has announced plans to create 10,000 new jobs across the European Union.
The tech giant said the workers would be needed to help develop the ‘metaverse’ – which it says will be a new platform that allows people to interact through virtual and augmented reality.
The company said the metaverse will be open source and will not be owned or operated by any one company.
Facebook Ireland head Gareth Lambe said the announcement would see the company hiring more staff in Ireland.
“Facebook is at the start of a journey to help build the next computing platform,” he said.
“Facebook Ireland has played an important role in our company’s growth and success to date.
“Today’s announcement is a commitment to grow in Ireland and across Europe and in our long-term investment in European talent to help build the metaverse.”
In a statement, Facebook said the metaverse would "help unlock access to new creative, social and economic opportunities."
"Europeans will be shaping it right from the start,” the company said.
“No one company will own and operate the metaverse. Like the internet, its key feature will be its openness and interoperability.
“Bringing this to life will take collaboration and cooperation across companies, developers, creators and policymakers. For Facebook, it will also require continued investment in product and tech talent, as well as growth across the business.”
The company said the decision to base the new jobs in the EU is a “vote of confidence in the strength of the European tech industry and the potential of European tech talent.”
“Europe is hugely important to Facebook,” it said. “From the thousands of employees in the EU to the millions of businesses using our apps and tools every day, Europe is a big part of our success, as Facebook is invested in the success of European companies and the wider economy.”
It said the EU’s “large consumer market, first class universities and top-quality talent” encouraged it to base the jobs in Europe.
“As we begin the journey of bringing the metaverse to life, the need for highly specialized engineers is one of Facebook’s most pressing priorities,” it said.
“We look forward to working with governments across the EU to find the right people and the right markets to take this forward, as part of an upcoming recruitment drive across the region.
“As Facebook continues to grow in Europe, we hope to invest more in its talent and continue to innovate in Europe, for Europe and the world.”