The current Brexit deal still has more questions than answers for local businesses, the Chairman of leading business organisation Institute of Directors Northern Ireland has said.

Gordon Milligan was addressing more than 140 delegates at a major lunch event organised by the business body in Belfast.

He said:

“The current deal agreed by Boris Johnson, that has seen the removal of the Northern Ireland backstop, raises more questions than answers.

“The government’s own impact assessment outlines the increasing burden of red tape and bureaucracy that could be placed on local businesses, especially around new customs requirements. That is deeply concerning.

“And it remains unclear whether Northern Ireland will benefit from any future EU or UK trade agreements.

“There is a tremendous desire among the local business community to understand the detail in all of this, and a huge feeling of uncertainty about what any future divergence between Northern Ireland and Great Britain will mean.

“This requires clarity – and urgently.”

The Meet the Experts lunch at the Hilton Hotel Belfast, formed part of the IoD’s Brexit Ready NI initiative, a major free advice service for members and non-members running throughout October.

Compered by BBC economics editor John Campbell, the event also heard from the IoD’s Head of EU and Trade Policy Allie Renison and Dr Katy Hayward, Reader in Sociology at Queen’s University, Belfast.

Delivered in partnership with KPMG, Brexit Ready NI offers guidance on a range of matters from how to prepare for a ‘no deal’, employment and immigration issues, to getting ready for any changes in the tax and customs landscape.

Still to come, a webinar on Trades, Customs, VAT and People Issues will be broadcast on 29th October from 12.30pm-1.30pm.

For further information, to seek Brexit advice tailored to your business, or register for the webinar, please contact