Tuesday 20 February 2018

NTMA chief economist says impact of Brexit on Ireland "impossible" to quantify

David Cameron and Enda Kenny
David Cameron and Enda Kenny

The impact on the Irish economy of a UK exit from the EU is impossible to quantify, the chief economist at the state’s debt management agency has said.

Rossa White of the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) identified trade and border issues as being the main areas of concern in the event that Britain withdraws from the European Union.

However he said he sees opportunities for Ireland in terms of foreign direct investment and financial services.

While Ireland’s international financial services hub is “heavily involved” in treasury, fund activities and other back office activities, he said there may be front-office opportunities.

A report from the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), published earlier this month, said a potential British withdrawal from the EU is likely to “significantly reduce” bilateral trade between the UK and Ireland by at least a fifth.

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