National headlines of a huge slump in EU exports for UK firms "is clearly not the experience of Northern Ireland manufacturers", one leading industry body has said.
Stephen Kelly, chief executive of Manufacturing NI, told Business Telegraph, that a survey of its members, due to be released this week, shows just 23% of firms report a "marginal or significant impact" largely due to confidence concerns around EU trading.
It comes after reports at the weekend that the volume of exports going through UK ports to the EU fell 68% in January, compared with the same period a year earlier.
The data, based on a survey of Road Haulage Association (RHA) members and first reported by The Observer, was detailed in a letter sent by the association to the Cabinet Office minister, Michael Gove, last Monday, pleading for "urgent intervention" to support critical supply chains.
"While work is required, reports from a UK logistics body that exports to the EU have declined by 68% is clearly not the experience of NI's manufacturers," Mr Kelly said.
"They are performing significantly better which is important given that our economy relies more on goods exports... and this external source of funding is critical to the NI economy as a whole.
"Only 23% of firms report a marginal or significant impact largely caused by confusion and confidence issues as EU customers struggle to differentiate between UK and NI's goods having the right to continue to freely circulate in the EU's single market," he said.
"There is a requirement for the EU and its member states to confirm to EU customers and government agencies the status of NI goods.
"For instance, we have had reports of customs authorities being unaware and unnecessary requirements for 'permanent establishment' being insisted upon.
"These are most visible in Ireland but similar stories are reported in other EU member states, particularly the Netherlands and Poland."
Largely focusing on Brexit for the 68% UK to EU exports drop, Richard Burnett, the RHA's chief executive, wrote that he "warned repeatedly that there was a lack of clarity over how the new arrangements would work and that hauliers, traders and manufacturers were confused, having had insufficient time to prepare" ahead of December 31, which marked the end of the Brexit transition period.
"Since transition, we have worked tirelessly to demonstrate the devastating consequences these changes are having but it is very clear that government are not doing enough to address them," he said in the letter.
Last week it was revealed haulage giant Hannon Transport had pulled its entire 20 daily lorry loads of GB to Ireland business and pivoted to increase trade directly with Europe saying it has become unviable.
After spending £600,000 over two and a half years on Brexit preparation, the company now has a team around 30 staff dealing with customs paperwork.
It's now moved to replace the lost income with other parts of the business and says turnover is only down around 5% compared to this time last year.