NI Business Groups Welcome New Political Talks to Restore Institutions

26 April 2019

Retail NI, Hospitality Ulster and Manufacturing NI have welcomed the new political talks to restore the Assembly and other institutions. The three business groups also called for a fourth strand on the economy to include key civic society organisations.

In a joint statement the Chief Executives of the three organisations, Glyn Roberts, Colin Neill and Stephen Kelly said:

“As the leading representative organisations of three sectors, we welcome these talks and urge all the participants to go the extra mile for an inclusive agreement to restore the institutions”

“We need the Executive restored and local Ministers making the key budgetary decisions based on sound evidence-based policy. The business community deserves more than a ‘care and maintenance’ administration and badly thought out emergency budgets”

“In these talks we need to see real leadership by our local political parties and an end to the blame game. 2019 cannot be yet another year with no government, no political progress and economic stagnation”

“With much-needed decisions not being made on reform of business rates and infrastructure investment, not addressing an ever-growing skills gap and modernisation of our town centres, Northern Ireland is not just lagging behind the rest of the UK and Ireland, it is in real danger of being left behind internationally.

“We believe that a fourth strand should be established in these talks to include key civic society organisations supporting the parties in building a genuine partnership approach to a rebooted economic agenda and a radically different and more ambitious programme for government”.