The Chamber

Media Release 12th May 2016 - Over half of business owners doubtful that new government will bring about positive change for businesses in Ireland

France Ireland Chamber of Commerce Business Owner Sentiment Index

Key Index Findings:

·         More than one in two (53%) business owners will recruit more staff over the next three months

·         Over two thirds (69%) expect revenue to increase during summer period

·         56% are pessimistic that the new government will create positive change for businesses

·         77% of business owners are concerned that the new government will hike corporate tax

·         More than one third (34%) of business owners would be less likely to do business with the UK following a Brexit


2016 has proven promising for Irish businesses thus far, with more than one in two (60%) business owners experiencing higher revenues since January compared with the same timeframe in 2015, and just 8% generated lower levels of revenue than the year previous. 60% of business owners also reported more incoming business since the beginning of this year, while over one third (38%) reported no change. These are among key findings of the latest France Ireland Chamber of Commerce (FICC) Business Owner Sentiment Index, conducted among 150 business owner members of Ireland’s third largest bi-lateral trade organisation.

The summer months are also looking bright for business owners in Ireland, with more than one in two (53%) planning to recruit more staff over the next three months, and over two thirds (69%) expecting revenue to increase during this period. One quarter anticipate that revenue will remain the same over the summer months and just 6% expect a fall in business earnings.

New Government, Low Expectations

The new Irish government may have finally taken shape, but the 70 day deadlock didn’t go unnoticed by Irish business owners; almost four in five (79%) found the lack of definitive time limit for establishing a new government a real cause for concern. The FICC Index results also highlighted that more than half (56%) of business owners are doubtful that the new government will effect positive change for businesses operating in Ireland. Furthermore, the vast majority (77%) are concerned that the new government will hike corporate tax, while 23% share no such worry.


Brexit concerns brewing

With the UK’s referendum on a Brexit fast approaching, over half (54%) of Irish business owners are worried that the UK leaving the EU would negatively impact their businesses while 46% do not share these concerns. Although the vast majority (86%) of business owners think businesses should have plans in place to effectively react to a Brexit, surprisingly, only one in five (20%) business owners have actually developed a plan to cope with the potential consequences of a Brexit.


The FICC research also found that more than one third (34%) of business owners would be less likely to do business with the UK following a Brexit due to increased legislative restrictions and trading costs.  Furthermore, a resounding 86% of business owners think that new trade agreements between Ireland and the UK will have to be introduced if the UK leaves the EU.

Commenting on the research results, FICC President and MD of JCDecaux Ireland Joanne Grant said,

“It is very encouraging to see how well businesses in Ireland have been performing since the beginning of 2016. With over half of our member businesses anticipating increased recruitment and revenue over the next few months, I am optimistic that businesses across the country will continue to flourish as we continue throughout the year.

Although there are concerns among business owners regarding the potential impact that the newly appointed government will have on Irish businesses, I think that its effectiveness can only be accurately judged once those in power are given the opportunity to lead and effect change. I hope the remainder of 2016 is as promising for the new government as it would appear to be for Irish businesses.”


About the France Ireland Chamber of Commerce


Founded over 30 years ago, the France Ireland Chamber of Commerce (FICC) promotes the expansion of trade and business links between Ireland and France.

The FICC is the third largest bilateral trade association in Ireland with 150 member companies and is represented by over 200 senior French and Irish executives.

FICC members include Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard, Alstom Ireland, BNP Paribas, CACI, Caceis, CRH plc, JCDecaux, LK Shields Solicitors, Mazars, Sanofi, Schneider Electric Ireland, PSG Communications, Servier, Smartbox, Smurfit Kappa, Transdev, Valeo and Veolia.

The Chamber provides a range of business services and networking events to encourage and facilitate the establishment of new French companies in Ireland and new Irish companies in France. For further information, visit


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