Representatives from the Letterkenny and Londonderry Chambers of Commerce met with An Taoiseach Micheál Martin in Letterkenny today (Friday 15 July) hosted by TCS, Letterkenny Global Delivery Centre during a visit to Letterkenny.
Members from the two Chambers, who signed a comprehensive memorandum of understanding in 2021 to jointly lobby and campaign on issues relating to the North West, discussed issues as varied as cross border worker taxation, cost of doing business, tourism, infrastructure and connectivity, and his department’s Shared Island Initiative.
Letterkenny Chamber businesses urged the Taoiseach to address the housing crisis to do more to support employees and families affected by the defective blocks scheme and to ensure that the financial support is in place to enable Letterkenny and Donegal to live up to its ambitions in terms of growth.
Businesses from the Londonderry Chamber also raised the lack of a functioning Executive and Assembly in Northern Ireland and urged the Irish Government to work constructively with local political parties and counterparts in the UK Government to facilitate a return to power sharing as soon as possible.
Speaking after the event Letterkenny Chamber President Kristine Reynolds said:
“This was a positive and timely engagement with the Taoiseach before the summer recess. It gave us a chance to outline the difficulties facing many businesses and households.
Ahead of the Budget in September, we stressed to the Taoiseach the importance of regional balance in delivering for communities in the North West Region. Letterkenny Chamber is committed to playing its part in delivering on its ambitious growth targets with stakeholders across the county and region. Support for our members’ priorities in terms of Infrastructure, Connectivity, Skills and education is crucial to help us realise our full potential. We see the Shared Island as a substantial opportunity for continued cross border working and collaboration to deliver a prosperous North West City Region.”
Londonderry Chamber President Aidan O’Kane added:
Speaking after the meeting, Londonderry Chamber President Aidan O’Kane said:
“We welcomed the opportunity to engage with An Taoiseach Micheál Martin this afternoon. This was a constructive meeting and an opportunity to raise long-standing demands in both Derry and Donegal for greater rail, road, and air connectivity with the rest of the island and other key economic markets, the Irish Government’s commitments to the expansion of Magee, and taxation of cross border workers.
“The cost-of-living and cost-of-doing-business crisis are also common challenges for businesses on both sides of the border, and today’s engagement was a timely opportunity to highlight these pressures to the Taoiseach and urge his Government to do all that they can to help facilitate the return of the Executive. As we have seen to date, cross-border collaboration is key to addressing the challenges faced by our members while also working to maximise the economic potential of the North West region. We look forward to further close working over the coming months.”