Posted on Friday 2 August 2019 by John Mulgrew

Simon 1

Former jobs minister Simon Hamilton says there is a strong desire to achieve “an orderly Brexit” to avoid long term damage to the economy, as he takes up his new role as head of Belfast Chamber.

Mr Hamilton, a former DUP MLA who held several ministerial posts at Stormont – including as Economy Minister – said 78% of its members backed the initial Withdrawal Agreement, and he will work with them to support a soft exit from the EU.

“There’s a desire to make sure there wasn’t a cliff edge, and it doesn’t have a detrimental effect on business,” he said. “Belfast Chamber members say they support an orderly Brexit – it’s a common sense place to be.”

“… they are pragmatic. The referendum was held and the result should be respected, but in a way that doesn’t do long term damage to the economy.”

Mr Hamilton has taken up his new role as chief executive of the Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce, which currently counts hotelier Rajesh Rana as its president.

Read the full interview with Simon Hamilton in the Top 100 edition of Ulster Business

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