Belfast Telegraph

Just 10% of small firms prepared for no-deal Brexit, says new survey

Concerned: Aidan Gough
Concerned: Aidan Gough
Ryan McAleer

By Ryan McAleer

Just one-in-10 small businesses here has made preparations for a no-deal Brexit, a new survey out today suggests.

InterTradeIreland's all-Island Business Monitor surveyed 760 businesses on both sides of the border during June and July.

It found that while 35% of larger companies have made some preparations for a no-deal outcome, only one-in-ten micro businesses had done so.

The survey revealed that 82% of cross-border traders, who are most exposed in the event of a no-deal, have not prepared for that outcome. Only 14% of businesses trading cross-border said they had examined the impact of customs, while just 12% had looked at the effect of tariffs.

Current business conditions remain good for many Northern Ireland companies. Some 45% reported growth, with just 11% indicating their business was in decline.

However, optimism remains low, with just 26% expecting that growth to continue in the next 12 months. The impact of Brexit remained the biggest issue for businesses, with 45% identifying it as a problem.

InterTradeIreland's director of strategy and policy, Aidan Gough, said: "The disparity between businesses recognising Brexit as the key issue facing them and the number actually preparing for it remains a worry.

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"While we appreciate the uncertainty facing businesses and the constant challenge to win new and service existing orders, we nevertheless implore firms, particularly those that trade across the border, to make themselves aware of the issues that Brexit could pose for their operations and to explore mitigating options."

Belfast Telegraph