Ibec forecasts strong growth in economy

The impact of Brexit on Ireland is once again under scrutiny with Ibec's Quarterly Economic Outlook
The impact of Brexit on Ireland is once again under scrutiny with Ibec's Quarterly Economic Outlook

Ibec has published its latest Quarterly Economic Outlook, which forecasts growth of 4.2% for 2017, and 3.2% in 2018.

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11 August 2017 | 0

Ibec’s latest Quarterly Economic Outlook report has been published, illustrating a strong labour market which promises to underpin the buoyance of the domestic economy. Despite this positive outlook, the report also warns about Brexit-related challenges that are almost certain to remain for exporters.

This will be a challenge for the regions in particular, the report says, with some counties up to five times more reliant on Brexit-exposed industries than Dublin.

The Irish economy is in a strong position,” says Gerard Brady, Ibec’s head of tax and fiscal policy. “Forecasts show the pace of employment growth will run anove 3% this year, for the first time since 2007. All signs show that the labour market is tightening rapidly and weathering Brexit uncertainty well.”

Brady adds that unemployment is expected to fall to below 6% by the end of the year.

“There are downside risks on the horizon too,” Brady adds. “Following a fall, indigenous exports to the UK have recovered some lost ground in the first half of 2017. But there will be increased volatility as the year goes on, with Sterling depreciating once more since the UK election.

“No matter what the outcome is,” he adds, “Brexit will hurt both our indigenous exporters and rural regions disproportionately.

“Budget 2018 must include measures to protect these vulnerable sectors,” he adds.

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