British Irish Chamber of Commerce host business roundtable with Sir Keir Starmer MP
Chamber brings together leading Irish businesses to reveal impact of Brexit on all sectors of Irish economy
The British Irish Chamber of Commerce today hosted the UK Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer MP in the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin to discuss the severe economic consequences of Brexit for businesses in every sector of the Irish economy should a ‘no-deal’ scenario come to pass.
The Chamber’s leadership team provided the prominent Labour Party politician with an overview of the strong level of interconnected trade across the Irish Sea and highlighted the negative repercussions for a variety of industries ranging from agri-food and ICT, to the higher education and research sector in the event that a Withdrawal Agreement is not concluded in the coming two months.
In welcoming the Shadow Brexit Secretary, John McGrane, Director-General of the British Irish Chamber of Commerce, said: “Today’s discussions between business leaders and the UK Shadow Brexit Secretary are extremely important given the now urgent need for negotiators to strike a deal on Brexit.
“Businesses in all areas of the island, and in all sectors of the economy are facing the real prospect of disrupted supply chains, new tariffs and other barriers to trade from March 2019. With less than 200 days until the UK withdraws from the EU, it is critical that this unprecedented risk to future EU-UK trading links is removed.
“Today’s roundtable builds upon strong previous engagement between the British Irish Chamber and the leadership of the UK Labour Party. The Chamber has met with Sir Keir a number of times this year to discuss what Brexit means for UK-Irish trade and our Big Principles policy paper that outlines a framework for a positive post-Brexit partnership. We will continue to work with UK leaders from across the political spectrum in helping to conclude an agreement that upholds our two-way trading ties.”
Speaking at the business roundtable, Sir Keir Starmer MP, the UK Shadow Brexit Secretary, said: “I was delighted to meet with the British Irish Chamber of Commerce to listen to its members’ concerns about Brexit and discuss how we can best protect the close and long-standing trading ties for businesses located on both sides of the Irish Sea.
“It is clear that Brexit represents a formidable challenge to cross-border trade and to the mutually beneficial business ties between the UK and Ireland.
“Although the Chequers proposals were supposed to help protect these links, they remain flawed and would not honour the solemn commitment to no hard border on the island of Ireland.
“A no-deal’ Brexit would be the worst possible outcome. It is therefore essential that a deal is reached that protects jobs and the economy, and works for both the United Kingdom and Ireland.”