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Exports growth forecast slashed

THE Irish Exporters' Association (IEA) has cut its forecast for growth after an unexpectedly weak third quarter of this year.

It now expects Irish exports to grow by 5pc this year, down from the 7pc initially predicted.

It said total exports in the third quarter were up only 1.7pc compared with the same period last year, with a 3pc drop in exports.

IEA chief executive John Whelan, above, said Irish companies were increasing their share of the world services market but losing market share in goods exports.

He said a "weak and bumpy" recovery seemed to be emerging in world trade and Irish exporters needed to expand their customer base, particularly to markets like Brazil, Russia, India and China.