Posted on Monday 3 June 2019 by Ulster Business

Gareth 1

Northern Ireland’s economic output, employment and house price growth are expected to stall in the next three years – slowing at a greater rate than the UK as a whole, according to fresh predictions.

According to the latest Ulster University Economic Policy Centre: Summer 2019 Outlook, while much of the current economic data is “reasonably positive, the overall outlook remains cautious… locally the employment rate is at a record high as the economy continues to create jobs, and real wages are starting to rise after an extended period of stagnation.”.

“However, broader global concerns and geo-political tensions create an environment of greater uncertainty which is likely to result in lower economic growth over the medium term,” it says.

It’s predicting overall GVA (gross value added) will fall to 1.3% in 2019, dropping further to 0.9% by 2022. Employment growth could also fall to as little 0.5% by 2022, and house price growth to 2.2%.

Gareth Hetherington, director of the Ulster University Economic Policy Centre, said that “it seems, economically, that we are in a permanent state of anticipation”.

“Both locally and internationally, we have spent the last few years waiting for something to happen.

“We have been waiting for the return of Stormont, the Brexit deal to be agreed, productivity growth to finally pick up, an outcome to the US-Chinese trade dispute, the list goes on. These factors all create uncertainty, which is the enemy of business investment, and act as a brake on economic growth.

“This is a shame because there are economic good news stories to be shared. The local economy has now created over 78,000 jobs since 2012, across many sectors, with momentum in growth being maintained.”

 

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