The auction website, eBay, has announced it is to create 800 new jobs at a facility in Blanchardstown in West Dublin by 2005.

The announcement was widely expected and officially confirmed this afternoon.

The Tánaiste, Mary Harney, has welcomed the confirmation.

Ms Harney said that the announcement was particularly good news for the area, following last week's decision by the US multinational 3com to close its factory there with the loss of 640 jobs.

But she said it was a pity that eBay had not taken a larger grants package to locate outside Dublin.

eBay is the world's largest online auction site and is one of the top five Internet destinations.

The new jobs will be split between two operations – eBay and its secure online payments subsidiary, Paypal.