Thu 7th Jul 2016
NI Chamber calls for ‘Stability. Clarity. Action.’ following EU Referendum
Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber) has laid out a range of priorities for business in the wake of the EU referendum.
The business organisation details the need for ‘Stability, Clarity and Action’ across key areas of the economy in a new policy document launched earlier today.
NI Chamber points to the requirement for stability for markets and business confidence; clarity on the timeframe for key decisions and action to proactively support the economy at a sensitive time of transition.
Commenting on the document, NI Chamber President Nick Coburn said:
“Whilst our members’ views on the EU referendum are diverse, our energy is now focussed on overcoming the immediate challenges, and seizing the eventual opportunities, that transition will bring.
“Following a brief period of reflection, businesses want to understand when changes will occur in government, when Article 50 will be triggered, and what the timeframe for negotiation will be thereafter.”
Strategic issues of immediate concern to NI Chamber members in light of the EU Referendum result include:
- Trade and access to markets
- The future of the manufacturing sector
- The development of major infrastructure projects
- Attracting Foreign Direct Investment
- Funding around local economic development projects
- Access to a skilled labour market
Mr Coburn also called on the Northern Ireland Executive to continue to progress the priorities which were stablished prior to the EU Referendum across a number of areas including growing trade; developing skills; driving down business costs and rebuilding Northern Ireland’s infrastructure. Mr Coburn continued:
“Now that the referendum has concluded, business people want to see the NI Executive continue to make other decisions that will improve the business environment, stoke confidence and support growth such as clarity on trade agreements; the progression of the North/South Interconnector; the reform of business rates and access to the monies raised by the proposed apprenticeship levy.
“These and other decisions are urgently required to support firms that are working tirelessly and optimistically to deliver sales, profits and prosperity despite facing skills gaps, trade uncertainty, rising costs and a markedly softer economy.
“Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry stands ready to participate actively in this process. Our network represents businesses of all sizes, across all sectors, and across all regions of Northern Ireland. We are keen to ensure that the whole range of business concerns and considerations are taken into account in the negotiations to come.”
A copy of the document can be downloaded here.