Business

Paper claims economy unity would be worth €36 billion to Ireland

Sinn Fein MEP Matt Carthy launches the paper 'A United Ireland – Better for Jobs, Enterprise and Research' in Dundalk
Gary McDonald Business Editor

A NEW document claims a united Ireland would transform the island's economy, leading to greater investment, increased exports and stronger research and collaboration between universities - and lead to a €35 billion boost for its citizens.

The Sinn Fein paper claims to demonstrate how Irish unity would unlock the real economic potential of the whole island, acting as a major spur for economic growth, leading to more jobs and improved living standards.

Party MEP Matt Carthy, who has previously warned of the challenges Brexit is already presenting in terms of cross border trade, business and commerce, particularly in border counties, formally launched the paper 'A United Ireland – Better for Jobs, Enterprise and Research' in Dundalk.

He said: "The border had long been an economic disaster for Ireland because the economy, north and south, is inter-dependent, and in terms of synergies, economies of scale and infrastructural development, a united Ireland makes economic sense.

“There are simply no advantages for an island of 6.4 million people having two separate tax regimes, legal systems and competing economic development programmes.”

He added: “Full economic integration would allow for fair and progressive taxation, regulation and trade. It would provide the tools for growth, employment and a better business climate.

“It would bring economic stability and create an environment in which business can thrive and would replace competition with cooperation, maximise inward investment and tourism, and promote Irish products, produce and business."

Proposals in the document include maximising the potential of InterTradeIreland to encourage all-Ireland trade, removing transaction costs including banking and telecoms, and aligning consumer and competition law.

It also calls for "increased coordination" between agencies like Invest NI and the IDA - which have historically been rivals in attracting foreign direct investment to their jurisdictions - and for them to jointly produce a strategy to transform border regions.

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