Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Brexit Stephen Donnelly TD has called on Taoiseach Enda Kenny to do more to protect Irish jobs, as UK and EU companies seek new suppliers.

Deputy Donnelly made the comments following the publication of a new survey by the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply, CIPS, indicating 46% of managers are anticipating a greater proportion of their supply chain being removed from the UK as they prepare for Brexit. One in three UK firms are looking at moving their business from EU companies, including Irish ones, to UK-based firms.

Deputy Donnelly said, “This latest survey shows that almost half of European businesses have already started looking to replace their British suppliers with competitors from inside the EU. These companies fear the damaging fallout that will accompany Brexit and are taking action now to protect their supply chains. This represents a big threat to Irish firms that sell to UK-based firms. It also represents a big opportunity for Irish firms to take over as the suppliers of choice to international firms seeking to move their supply chains out of the UK.

“The Government strategy to date has been to focus on the negotiations first. Seizing the opportunities associated with Brexit seems to be an afterthought. With international competition already heating up ahead of Brexit, this strategy leaves very real benefits on the table for Irish business.

“Irish businesses simply haven’t been given the support they need from Government to secure contracts that are becoming available as a result of Brexit. The additional resource allocation to public bodies such as the IDA, Enterprise Ireland and Bord Bia does not represent the national reaction that Brexit requires. We are beginning to see the cost of this approach. Research which I received earlier today indicates that there has been a marked reduction in interest in Ireland over the last 5 months among insurers wishing to leave the UK on the back of Brexit.

“The Government has promised plans to seize the business opportunities presented by Brexit. They are failing to deliver. Ireland is facing an increasingly competitive environment as a result of the policies pursued by President Trump in the US alongside the push for a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base in the EU. It’s important that the limited opportunities associated with Brexit are not squandered”.