Northern Ireland has opportunity to attract investment


Chartered Accountants Ireland has published a guide for companies overseas on Northern Ireland’s attractiveness after Brexit

Northern Ireland now has a great opportunity to attract new investment from overseas thanks to the protocol, an accountancy body has said.

Chartered Accountants Ireland has published a guide for companies overseas on Northern Ireland’s attractiveness following Brexit.

The protocol has left NI within the EU single market for goods but with continued unfettered access to Britain.

However, it has ushered in controversial checks on goods coming from Britain, resulting in a border down the Irish Sea which unionists claim erodes their sense of Britishness.

But Paul Henry, president of Chartered Accountants Ireland, insisted: This is a time of change, but also great opportunity for Northern Ireland. Post-Brexit trading arrangements, which give Northern Ireland companies unfettered access to sell into both Great Britain and the EU, make the region a unique investment location.

Those already located here know our natural advantages as a place to do business: our location; our strong transport links with our neighbours; our ambitious, educated workforce; a stable and competitive tax system, and our ability to innovate and change with the times, he said.

Maeve Hunt, who is now entering a second term as chair of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society, added: For businesses wishing to explore opportunities in the UK, NI’s dual status in both the UK and EU single market for goods makes the region very appealing in terms of foreign direct investment, particularly in the manufacturing and distribution sectors.

Writing in the brochure, Manufacturing NI chief executive Stephen Kelly said that in nearly eight years in his role, I have never encountered such a level of interest in Northern Ireland as an investment location for manufacturing.

Whilst these projects are still at an early stage, if we iron out the issues with the protocol and land even some of them then they would be transformative to our economy, he added.

A meeting is to be held tomorrow of the joint EU-UK committee on the protocol.

Both sides are to discuss any progress in their talks on solving problems that have emerged from the mechanism.

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