The Head of BT in Northern Ireland, Paul Murnaghan, was today (18 June 2021) elected as President of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber).
Paul joined BT in 2004, becoming the Regional Director of BT Enterprise NI in January 2017. Before joining BT, he held a number positions in the IT industry.
He succeeds Henry Brothers Director, Ian Henry, as President of the business organisation which supports over 1,000 members from across Northern Ireland.
Speaking following the virtual NI Chamber AGM earlier today, Paul Murnaghan commented:
“I am delighted to have been elected as President of the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry, a role which carries with it a responsibility to support business growth.
“Businesses here are resilient – they are doing all they can to get back to normal, to bounce back, but it is getting tougher and tougher to move forward and the lack of focus on the economy by our elected representatives is very disheartening.
“At this time their priority should be to deliver a safe and managed economic recovery, one that focusses on re-establishing Northern Ireland as an attractive place for inward investors and tourists once again, one that invests in connectivity and shares positive, not negative, messages worldwide. One that works collegiately to transform our health care and education systems.”
He continued: “We must look towards the opportunities. These include dual market access, the new trade deals with key markets such as Canada and Australia, the UK levelling up and All Island funding and the expertise that is available from our excellent universities and FE colleges.
“We need to see our political leaders and our communities working together in the best interests of Northern Ireland. A spirit of compromise and cooperation saw us through some of the worst weeks of the pandemic last year. We need that again if we are to truly recover.”
The NI Chamber AGM also saw Gillian McAuley, Group HR Director of Devenish Nutrition, elected as Vice-President. Gillian commented:
“I am extremely proud to be appointed as Vice-President. NI Chamber is a well-respected business support organisation, with local roots and extensive links ranging from the World-Wide Chambers Network, the British Chambers of Commerce and Chambers Ireland.
“The organisation sits at the heart of our economy, helping businesses to help each other. That partnership approach has never been more relevant or important and the practical support it is currently providing to businesses across sectors is crucial.
“I look forward to working with the NI Chamber Board, Council and Executive team to cement NI Chamber’s position at the forefront of business support and representation.”
Welcoming both into their new roles, NI Chamber Chief Executive Ann McGregor, said:
“I would like to congratulate Paul and Gillian on their election and thank the outgoing President Ian Henry for working exceptionally hard on behalf of member businesses over the past year. Our new President and Vice-President bring a breadth of experience which will become a great asset to the organisation.”