The Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD today, (Monday 11 February 2019), urged businesses to scrutinise their supply chains for risk of exposure when the UK leaves the EU.
“We are now less than 50 days away from the key date on which, as things stand, the UK will leave the EU. Some businesses may not think that they will be exposed post Brexit, but if they trade with the UK, including Northern Ireland, or their supply chain is partly dependant on the UK they will be”, Minister Humphreys said.
The Minister continued, “I am urging businesses of all scale to put their supply chains under the microscope to check for risks and vulnerabilities to the UK. If their business depends on sourcing a product, component or perhaps a service from the UK, their supply chain may be at risk.”
The UK accounts for a quarter of the total Irish goods imports and a large proportion will go on to be further processed in Irish manufacturing.
“Businesses could very well be exposed through their supply chain upstream, such as those who import all of their ingredients, materials or components from the UK. They may be impacted with tariffs, and customs-related delays at the port, all of which will have considerable impacts for the cashflow of a business,” the Minister added.
Once businesses have assessed their supply chain’s exposure there are a range of supports on offer from Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland and the 31 Local Enterprise Offices and information on what actions to take.
Reiterating the call to business owners to act now, the Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen TD said “Business needs to engage now with the array of Government bodies available to help them navigate Brexit. If businesses need help in examining their supply chain, they can talk directly to many of our Government departments or State agencies. They offer advice and financial supports that help business on specific issues such as movement of labour, goods, services and currency management.”
The Minister continued, “If businesses are unsure as to where to start they can contact their nearest Local Enterprise Office who can help point them in the right direction.”