Newry Chamber was delighted to welcome Conor Burns MP, Minister for State Northern Ireland to Newry City.
The Minister was keen to understand the particular challenges faced by businesses in the Greater Newry Area and other parts of the region so that government legislation can be aligned to the needs of all communities.
The Minister is undergoing a period of listening to understand the issues, discuss potential opportunities and identify where levels of intervention are required.
Julie Gibbons, President of Newry Chamber set out the Chamber’s priorities for Newry City and the Greater Newry Area based on the key issues experienced by businesses in the areas of healthcare, housing, infrastructure and skills.
The key issues set out by the Chamber included:
- A Hospital with facilities and resources to attract the consultants and respond to acute needs in the Greater Newry Area, north and south of the border.
- Demand for sufficient commercial space and additional housing.
- Fundamental Infrastructure including waste water, water treatment, parking and transport.
- Addressing the current skills, recruitment and retention issues.
- Increasing NI’s competitive advantage in comparison to the Republic of Ireland where businesses benefit from the salary differential and a larger talent pool.
- The need for political stability, progressive government and longer-term decision-making to encourage talent to remain in and move to the Greater Newry Area.
Newry Chamber were represented by:
- Julie Gibbons, President of Newry Chamber
- Tony McKeown, CEO of Newry Chamber
- Deborah Loughran, Warrenpoint Port
- Brian Doran, Southern Regional College
- Eamonn Connolly, Newry BID
- Ian Sheppard, AbbeyAutoline
- Richard Ward, Shelbourne Motors
- Liz Toner, FD Technologies