Business leaders call for restoration of Stormont

President of Belfast Chamber, Rajesh Rana (left) , with Julian Smith yesterday
Ryan McAleer

THE Secretary of State for Northern Ireland met with business leaders in Belfast yesterday amid calls for political parties to ‘get back to work’.

Julian Smith sat down with around two dozen business figures in a meeting organised by Belfast Chamber.

The group's chief executive Simon Hamilton, said its members were keen to discuss Boris Johnston’s Brexit deal and the efforts to restore devolution.

“Business has suffered from so much uncertainty and a lack of decision-making,” the former DUP minister said.

“We implore our local political parties to restore the Assembly and Executive without delay and we restated to Mr Smith our desire for a business-friendly Brexit which permits local businesses to trade with the EU without a hard border and the rest of the UK unencumbered.”

The chief executive of Retail NI, Glyn Roberts, yesterday echoed those sentiments, stating there were “no more excuses” for politicians.

“The political parties need to strike a deal and get back to work - that was the clear message of the voters in last week's election.

“Northern Ireland's political leaders need to lead the way with big bold solutions and to take the difficult decisions. Real leaders do not see problems; they seek solutions.”

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