Guaranteed Irish call for ‘Brand Ireland’ to protect jobs, hold the backstop and support the Government.

Date: 1 Aug 2019

 By Brid O’Connell, Chief Executive Officer, Guaranteed Irish.

“As the Central Bank reports fears of job losses due to a no deal Brexit, it’s time for “Brand Ireland” to stand together to ensure the backstop is not removed.”

 The backstop has been approved by Europe, Ireland and the UK democratically- there can be no move on this if we want to keep jobs on this island and secure our vibrant economy. It is alarming to read that “a hard Brexit will bring economic growth here crashing down from the fastest in the eurozone to the slowest”.

Guaranteed Irish, since its rejuvenation two years ago, has repositioned itself to ensure it supports all businesses (not just indigenous) who support jobs and their communities in Ireland. It has been well received in its new format and reflects a modern Ireland that encourages diversity and inclusion and offers a platform for both Irish and international businesses to trade with each other and drive our economy.

As the national symbol of trust and provenance “Guaranteed Irish” uniquely communicates to the consumer that a Guaranteed Irish approved business is playing its part in creating jobs in Ireland- those jobs keep our communities alive and supports additional “spin off” homegrown enterprises. They are the back bone of our economy and should be protected at all costs. These committed businesses who, along with making profit, share some of their success with their community- making Ireland a great place to invest and live in. We all have a duty to support them where possible, and encourage more businesses to follow suit. We must protect our jobs or risk facing back into the abyss of 2010/2011- where jobs were scarce and emigration was high. The citizens of Ireland do not deserve another recession- it is time we all came out to support the backstop and prevent a ‘no deal Brexit’- both will be a disaster for Ireland. We must find a solution.

As a small island country we are heavily indebted to all of those who negotiated and agreed the backstop for us- let us hold on to it now. There must be no wavering. It is heartening to read that the “EU is united in its view that the Withdrawal Agreement could not be reopened”. If we are to believe British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, he will bring both Ireland and the UK to the brink and risk the worst outcome for both our countries. However, today Ireland depends on exports at 10% to the British market in comparison to 74% in 1960. While we don’t want to lose our trade partnerships and friendship with our nearest neighbour, we must not go back to “borderland”. It is a regressive step economically and politically- not welcomed by anyone. Ironically, Brexit has positioned Ireland to look strong, balanced and progressive to our European and international friends to invest here further. While we are small, we are useful and other states have come to realise how important it is to support us as we support all businesses here at home in equal measure- the Guaranteed Irish symbol allows consumers recognise the businesses to support. Look out for it and if you are a member, now is the time to use it.

Equally it is time to support our Government and stand firm on the backstop. We have come a long way, we must never return to a border of any kind. “Brand Ireland” needs to stand firm behind the Government. Like Guaranteed Irish, we are, “all together better”.

For further information contact

Brid O’Connell

CEO – Guaranteed Irish

01 6612607 or 087 8395330

Further information on Guaranteed Irish:

  • Guaranteed Irish has over 600 members that make a significant contribution to the Irish economy every year, both in terms of turnover and employment, as well as to their local communities.
  • The organisation considers three core criteria when assessing an applicant for membership – evidence of delivering quality Irish jobs, supporting local communities and a commitment to Irish provenance.
  • Total revenues among its members grew to €26.2bn in 2018, up €350m in just 12 months. Turnover figures for sales in Ireland by member companies also increased last year – rising by 2.3% to reach €11.2bn. Total employment at all Guaranteed Irish member businesses reached 71,390 in 2018, an increase of 43.3% (21,573) on the same figure for 2017. As well as existing members increasing their employee numbers, this figure also reflects the fact that 200+ new members joined the organisation last year. Members are also forecasting a further 5.8% increase in employment in 2019.

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