Newry and Armagh MLA  Justin McNulty MLA has warned of the serious consequences of Brexit on Newry and Armagh having attended the Brexit and the Border Corridor Conference organised by East Border Region and local Councils. Mr McNulty warned of the possibility of 1200 local jobs being lost.

Speaking after the conference, the MLA said, ‘The UK Government are playing Russian Roulette with our economy and there is a real danger that Teresa May’s stance on Brexit could see 4,500 jobs in the north lost, with 1200 of those jobs in the border region.  This is not political scaremongering, it’s the view of the independent economic experts who presented at the conference today.  In addition to this, the Irish Government warned that the lack of an Executive in Stormont is not helping the preparations for negotiations with the EU.’

Justin McNulty MLA, Aidan Gough from InterTrade Ireland and Liam Hannaway, Chief Executive, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council.
Justin McNulty MLA, Aidan Gough from InterTrade Ireland and Liam Hannaway, Chief Executive, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council.

‘I want to congratulate East Border Region, which is based in Newry and the local councils involved in organising today's conference.  We heard from government officials from both North and South, as well as the cross border enterprise agency Intertrade Ireland and the University of Ulster.  The warnings were clear, that the lack of an Executive is hampering progress. Put simply, it means we have no voice and no influence at one of the most critical times in Irish, British and European politics.’

‘The Island of Ireland is going to be massively impacted by Brexit and it is a real threat to our economic, political and social society.  Civil servants have been working in the background, but this is no substitute for democratically elected politicians.  In effect, they have been working in the shadow of a non-functioning assembly with the threat looming of a very hard brexit.’ 

‘On a monthly basis 200,000 vans, 177,000 lorries and 1.5million cars across our border frictionlessly. It doesn’t matter if you’re in construction, agriculture, financial services, the hospitality sector or the community and voluntary sector; Brexit will seriously impact the way you do business.’

‘Today’s conference was excellent, and even in the midst of all the warnings, I drew some hope.  At least our local councils have the vision and foresight to get on with planning for and shaping a society post Brexit when the Executive is failing to do so.’

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