Leaders of Irish business community back closer investment links with Scotland
ONE OF IRELAND’S BIGGEST business groups has called for closer economic cooperation with Scotland to counter-act the threats of a hard Tory Brexit.
Ibec, an Irish business group with over 7,500 business members across the Irish economy, said that the political threat of Brexit is a reason for Scotland and Ireland to seek closer ties.
The statement comes after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon told an Irish business gathering that she would support free movement and trade in her efforts to “mitigate” the threats of Brexit in upcoming negotiations.
Ibec CEO Danny McCoy, following the event, said: “Brexit must not be allowed to upset the deep and collaborative ties that already exist between our two countries. Instead, we need to refocus our efforts on identifying shared opportunities and overcoming shared challenges.
“Right across the economy, from energy to education, from agri-food to life sciences, we must work together and learn from each other. Irish business will play its full part.”
”Despite the uncertainties, our underlying economic strengths mean we can look to the future with confidence and optimism. Scottish exports to Ireland are already worth 1.3bn euro and Irish investment into Scotland supports 6,300 jobs. There is enormous potential to significantly improve on this over the coming years.”
Concerns among big business in Ireland, especially over tariff free trade, and import/export stability, mirrors concerns over Brexit among Scotland’s business community.
Figures from the financial services, aviation, and universities sectors have warned that their industries’ positions are threatened by Brexit.
Scottish Government minister Keith Brown said there has been a “shift” in Scotland’s business community – members of which are now “scenario planning” for independence as a result of the Brexit vote.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, welcoming Irish business support, added: “Scotland and Ireland have a long history of economic co-operation and today was a great opportunity to hear from some of Ireland’s leading business figures about how we strengthen these ties.”
The Scottish Government has set up a ‘business hub’ in Dublin to encourage trade relationships.
Picture courtesy of First Minister of Scotland
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