Irish cross-border trade explodes after Brexit amid energy growth | International exchange


Northern Ireland and Ireland are enjoying what looks like a €4bn (£3.4bn) increase, with inter-country trade booming back and forth after Brexit, according to new figures.

Official government data released in Dublin by the Central Statistics Office showed that imports from Northern Ireland to Ireland increased by 23% to €1.9 billion between January and May 2022 compared to the same period in 2021.

Trade in the other direction, from Ireland to Northern Ireland, jumped 42% to €1.9 billion over the same comparative periods.

The increase in food and live animal movements from Northern Ireland to Ireland was dramatic, from €119 million to €544 million.

However, there was a larger increase in the sale of energy, recorded as ‘mineral fuels, lubricants and allied materials’ and likely to refer to North Sea oil and gas.

Sales to Ireland doubled in value from €106m to €218m in the first five months of this year compared to the same period in 2021.

The rise may partly reflect higher energy prices this year, but also suggests a shift in sources as Europe continues to wean itself off Russian supplies in the wake of the war in Ukraine.

The figures also show that imports from Britain to the Republic of Ireland increased from €5.2 billion in January to May 2021 to €9.3 billion in January to May 2022.

Trade barriers caused by Brexit had affected exports to Ireland immediately after Brexit, with red tape posing new challenges.

The latest CSO figures suggest UK exporters have become accustomed to the new systems.

However, the war in Ukraine also appears to be a factor, with sales of mineral fuels and lubricants to Ireland from Britain nearly quadrupling.

From January to May 2021, there were €727m of UK exports to Ireland in the sector.

This jumped to just over €3 billion for the same period in 2022.

Northern Ireland’s trade data matches a report released Monday by trade manufacturing body Make UK, which showed 63% of Northern Ireland’s exports go to the EU, more than any other nation or UK region.

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In value terms, the largest increase in exports from Ireland to Northern Ireland was in chemicals and related projects, which rose from €267 million to €369 million.

The second largest increase in value is in food and live animal exports to Northern Ireland, rising from €498 million in the first five months of 2021 to €648 million in the same period in 2022.

Northern Ireland’s trade with Ireland has not been hampered by Brexit, unlike the rest of the UK, where exporters face a mountain of paperwork and compliance issues to sell in the UK. EU.

Under the Northern Ireland protocol, strongly contested by unionist political parties, European export legislation is respected, allowing an open border with the republic.


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