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Brexit and lack of Executive having “negative impact" on NI business

  • Northern Irish businesses are being negatively impacted by Brexit and the lack of an Executive, according to NI Chamber and business advisers BDO's latest Quarterly Economic Survey.

    The latest Quarterly Economic Survey from BDO and the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry was published on 9 January, highlighting the lack of local executive and Brexit as being key components in the factors having "an increasingly negative impact on business growth."

    Looking ahead to the year that stands before us, the survey conducted reveals that a staggering 79% of businesses believe that the lack of Northern Ireland executive will be damaging to the prospects of Northern Ireland economically in 2019. A significant 52% of people have predicted this will have a negative impact on their own businesses also.

    The survey conducted, which covered Q4 2018, revealed that failed investment intentions paired with weak order books will result in a muted end to 2018 for local business. Overall, in Q4 2018 survey, there are still signs of growth in the Northern Irish economy overall, with all positive balances meaning that more businesses in manufacturing and services are highlighting increases in sales and jobs rather than a decrease.

    NI Chamber’s regular Brexit Watch suggests that Brexit is having an increasingly negative impact on local businesses particularly those largely around costs. Around one in ten businesses have stated a positive impact on business as a result of the vote, whereas, 50% of members have reported that Brexit is having a negative impact on costs with a further 35% reporting a dip in turnover and sales.

    As we enter 2019, there are many prospects for the new year and members are positive overall about their business prospects, with 45% of business owners expecting to see growth in their businesses and 15% expecting strong growth projections. Despite this, only 23% of business owners are confident that there will be economic growth in 2019 and 53% believe the economy will contract this year.

    SOURCE: Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber) Press Release

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