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Vast majority of business leaders think Brexit will have short-term negative impact on Irish economy

That’s according to the latest quarterly survey carried out by the Institute of Directors in Ireland.

Image: Brian O'Leary via RollingNews.ie

THE MAJORITY OF business leaders don’t believe that the EU and UK can achieve a trade deal by the December 2020 deadline, according to a new survey. 

Almost nine in 10 (87%) of business leaders believe that Brexit’s impact on the Irish economy will be negative in the short-term. 

This is according to the latest quarterly survey carried out by the Institute of Directors in Ireland (IoD), which was published today. 

The survey was carried out between 18 and 26 March among its 3,000 members, comprising CEOs and company directors. 

When asked ‘Do you think the EU and the UK can reach a trade deal before the end of the transition period in 2020?’, a total of 74% of business leaders said no. Just under 13% said yes, while 14 said they don’t know. 

When those surveyed were asked about Ireland’s status in the EU post-Brexit, 30% believe it will be ‘enhanced’, which is a 9% decrease on the previous quarter. 

30% of those surveyed say it is ‘difficult to judge’ and 22% believe it will be ‘diminished’. A total of 19% say it will be ‘unchanged’. 

Today’s survey comes in advance of the resumption of the EU-UK trade deal talks. 

With discussions disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, the EU and UK agreed a new timetable for three further rounds of post-Brexit trade negotiations, including today, 11 May and 1 June. 

“These are immensely challenging times for us all, for society as a whole, for employees and their families, and businesses. We are all concerned about matters of life and deaths, as a priority,” IoD chief executive Maura Quinn said. 

“That said, while Brexit and the EU-UK trade talks have been sidelined as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, business leaders are acutely aware of the potential Brexit fallout and the importance of these negotiations on our open economy,” Quinn said. 

Whether or not there is a trade deal achieved by the December deadline, it is imperative that we see some positive signs emerge from these talks that a trade deal is within range, even if it is not achievable this year. 

“This is crucial as we have a context where many are forecasting tough times ahead for the global economy. Business confidence needs a boost.” 

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