Businesses in the Republic are enjoying higher levels of growth than their counterparts in Northern Ireland, according to a new survey.
The latest quarterly InterTradeIreland Business Monitor Report has said that the economy across the island is in a "healthy position" with 40% of businesses in "growth mode" and 54% reporting stability.
A breakdown of the figures reveals significantly more firms in the Republic are enjoying growth - 45% compared to 28% in Northern Ireland.
Aidan Gough, InterTradeIreland's strategy and policy director, said: "Overall there is a healthy business environment on the island, with an impressive 94% of companies reporting they are in a position of either stability or growth, and 84% indicating they are working close to or at full capacity.
"While this may be a harbinger of inflationary pressures to come, it could also signal an unwillingness to invest, perhaps, until the uncertainty around the future trading relationship between Britain and the EU becomes clearer."
"And 98% of businesses are still saying they are not formally planning for Brexit. However, we are encouraged by the fact that an increasing number of firms with cross-border sales are revealed as having started informal preparations. Over 40% have discussed Brexit impacts with other businesses and 34% have held internal meetings.
"With the economy in a healthy space, now is the best time to start looking at how Brexit could impact your business and InterTradeIreland is encouraging SMEs to plan, act and engage in preparation for Brexit."