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Brexit casts shadow on Newry's future

By Margaret Canning

Brexit is overshadowing the promise of a very good year in 2017 for business in Newry, it's been claimed. Best Property Services said commercial property activity was up 25% during 2016 but that the vote to leave the EU had dominated the final quarter of the year.

Ciara Aiken, the firm's commercial director, said: "Initially we felt the banks pull back on lending, but in recent weeks that has loosened again.

"It's such an unknown quantity, with no timescale or clear idea of how it will impact Northern Ireland, Newry and the border region specifically, that it's a shadow on what points towards a very positive 2017 for Newry commercially."

She said 2016 highlights for commercial property included the letting of 4,000 sq ft in Plaza Retail Park on Belfast Road to LYNAS Foods.

Shopping centres had also enjoyed a boost in shoppers from across the border, thanks to the fall in sterling following the vote to leave the EU.

And Damolly Retail Park was also sold for £30m to MJM Marine, while work has also started on Custom House, a new mixed office/retail development at the former tax office on Merchant's Quay.

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