Official figures from the NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) have revealed that the value of goods sales from Great Britain to Northern Ireland have dropped by 2.4% in 2022. In contrast, the value of goods imported from the Republic of Ireland, the wider EU and the rest of the world all increased.
The Windsor Framework was devised in the main to encourage businesses in GB to keep trading with their NI partners. However these latest figures may suggest that more needs to be done to increase trade between the two.
£43.4 Billion Of Goods Were Purchased In NI In 2022
Here are the results from the latest data, as copied from an article by John Campbell on the BBC News website:
‘The new figures from the NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) show that £43.4bn of goods were purchased in Northern Ireland in 2022, an increase in value of 8.8%.
‘It is important to emphasise that the impact of inflation means the volume of goods purchased will not have risen by that much and may even have fallen.
‘Most of the goods purchased, almost £24bn worth, were purchased locally and increased in value by 11%.
‘Goods purchases from Great Britain were worth £11bn, down by 2.4% while imports from Ireland were worth almost £3bn, up by 4.8%.
‘Goods purchases from the wider EU were up 8.3% to £2.2bn while rest of the world goods imports were up 47% to £3.5bn.
‘Meanwhile the figures show the value of Northern Ireland’s exports and external sales rose sharply but again the impact of inflation will have flattered this performance.
‘The rest of the UK remains Northern Ireland’s biggest external market with goods sales of £9.6bn, up 17%, and £6bn of services, up 12%.
‘The Republic of Ireland is the biggest export market with goods exports of £4.6bn, up almost 15%, and £1.7bn of services, up almost 29%.
‘Overall exports of goods and services to the rest of the EU were up by 2% to £2.7bn, while exports to the rest of the world were up 16% to £4.2bn.’
Trade Diversion Is Highly Likely
In the same article Ulster University economist Esmond Birnie, who is no fan of the Windsor Framework, said the new figures “do not prove trade diversion but suggests it is highly likely”.
“It’s also very likely that this represents a shift to higher- cost suppliers – hence long-run harm to the economy overall, notwithstanding gains to particular businesses.”