In a joint statement following the resignation of First Minister Paul Givan, NI Chamber President Paul Murnaghan and Chief Executive Ann McGregor said:
“The resignation of the First Minister has significant consequences which will negatively impact on people and businesses across Northern Ireland.
“The decision effectively paralyses the Executive, leaving legislation and decision making in limbo. It places the much needed draft three-year budget in jeopardy. Suspending the upcoming review of Covid-19 restrictions could have damaging consequences for recovery from the pandemic and will heap further difficulty on people and businesses.
“Combined with the directive to suspend checks at ports, this decision creates an unsustainable level of uncertainty for businesses, at a time when they need support and stability. It also has the potential to seriously damage local and international business confidence.
“The ramifications of this are far-reaching, impacting not just on business. People are facing significant challenges, with societal issues like fuel poverty affecting individuals and families already. Another political crisis exacerbates these problems and stalls progress for everyone.
“Political division has held Northern Ireland static for too long. Our recovery and future economic prosperity demands a dramatically different approach. The time is overdue for all our elected representatives to start consistently putting people and the economy before politics.”