Dual market access ‘presents unique economic opportunity’

Chartered Accountants Ulster Society says reduced corporation tax rate plus renewed FDI interest could kick start local economy

Combining dual UK/EU market access, a reduced corporation tax rate, and renewed interest by potential US investors “could be an economic game changer for Northern Ireland”, an accountancy head believes.

That was the headline message from Paul Millar, chair of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society, when he addressed the organisation’s annual dinner in front of 400 guests at Titanic Belfast.

“With the right approach, an entrepreneurial mindset and everyone pulling in the right direction, we have a tremendous opportunity to be a unique business hub,” he said.

“If we can take that opportunity, it means a better standard of living for everyone with better job, public services and better prospects.

“We live in straitened times, but we need to find solutions. We need to focus on opportunities because they are there. Strategic initiatives could have a big part to play.

“But the talent is here, the success stories are here, and the potential is right here,” he added.

Mr Millar’s speech also highlighted the role of political leadership and the need to build on the confidence generated by the restoration of the Northern Ireland Assembly.

“It’s really positive that we now have restored political leadership back at Stormont, ready to face the challenge,” he said.

“We also have a great opportunity to create a resurgence in economic optimism and determination, spurred on by renewed leadership and a clear vision for the future.

“Encouraging entrepreneurship is not just about financial gains. It’s about empowering individuals, revitalising communities, and shaping a brighter future for generations to come.

“Northern Ireland is a great place to live and a great place to do business. There is so much potential and much to be positive about. We need to work together, with the right mindset, to take the opportunity that is in front of us.”