Stability, not chaos, required,says Chamber’s Ian Henry

The President of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber), Ian Henry, has urged political leaders to commit to working together to avoid any further unnecessary disruption for business in the weeks and months ahead.

He commented “Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the initial impact of Brexit and the recent unrest and its associated reputational damage to the Northern Ireland economy and wider society, NI Chamber calls on our political leaders to commit to working together to avoid causing any further unnecessary disruption and to ensure that they remain focused on rebuilding the NI economy.”

The call comes at a time when the business organisation’s membership is reporting an increase in business confidence and as many re-open their doors for the first time this year.

Ian Henry continued: “NI Chamber’s most recent Quarterly Economic Survey with BDO indicated that business confidence has improved in Q1 2021 after the large collapse experienced at the start of the pandemic.

“In fact, the business confidence indicators are positive in Q1 2021, meaning that more businesses believe that their business turnover and profitability will grow over the next 12 months compared to those who believe that it will fall.

“This is positive news at a pivotal time for Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Executive. A time when businesses require stability.

“Regardless of everyone’s tradition or political views, or whether you are employed in the public, private or third sector, I would confidently say that we are united in our desire to avoid any political chaos in the weeks and months ahead.

“Businesses need the positive side of Northern Ireland to return to the news and media, and for the economy to be a main priority for our politicians.

“We need to ensure that Northern Ireland is a welcoming place for inward investors and that our indigenous businesses have the best chance to grow and export. We must ensure that the cost of moving goods internally does not reduce our competitiveness or choice and all our young people have a chance to secure good employment.”