At last night’s Council Meeting (6th December), Waterford City and County Council approved the Annual Budget which provided for no increase in Commercial Rates for 2017.
Waterford Chamber has welcomed this decision by the Council, recognising that the current economic environment remains uncertain for many businesses and that any increase might have the potential to slow down the progress being made throughout Waterford going forward.
Waterford Chamber President, Laurent Borla said, “We welcome this decision by the Council and very much appreciate that it recognises the importance for the business environment to prosper in Waterford City and County over the next 12-month period. We acknowledge the efforts of the Council to support the business community and in turn this places a responsibility on us all to focus on developing the economy here in Waterford for the benefit of all concerned.
“We believe that it’s vital for Waterford to compete and attract new investment to the area and this decision will support this effort in the short to medium term.”
Waterford Chamber and Bank of Ireland hosted an 'Inspiring Women in Business Lunch' at the Athenaeum House Hotel on Friday, 2nd December with guest speaker, Ruth Beadle, General Manager at Sanofi Waterford.
Ireland the only country to identify Brexit as a significant challenge
A survey of European businesses, published on 30th November 2016 by EUROCHAMBRES, has revealed that Brexit is not considered a concern for most companies. The survey, which was conducted in autumn 2016 and had 50,500 respondents from across Europe, asked businesses to rank the main challenges they believed they faced in 2017. While Irish firms identified the impact of Brexit as the second biggest challenge to the development of their business after labour costs, only 9.6% of European businesses registered Brexit as a challenge at all.
Commenting on the results, Nick Donnelly, Chief Executive of Waterford Chamber said, “This survey confirms that Irish businesses are feeling significantly more exposed to the impact of Brexit than businesses in the rest of Europe. According to Irish firms, Brexit will be the second most difficult challenge for them in 2017 with firms only identifying labour costs as a greater threat. While it is not surprising that Brexit is a priority for Irish business given our proximity to the UK and the importance of our trading relationship, it is alarming that businesses across Europe are not more concerned by the potential impact of the loss of the EU’s second biggest market.”
“We believe that this perspective will have implications for the approach adopted by member states to any future negotiations on the UK’s exit. If European businesses do not see the importance of maintaining close trade relationships with the UK, they are far less likely to support a pragmatic approach to negotiations.”
“From our engagement with our European partners we had anticipated this response. Other European countries are far more preoccupied with issues like the migrant crisis, climate change, Russia’s expansion into Crimea, and long term youth unemployment. We believe there is a role to play for Ireland’s business community to help our counterparts in Europe to understand that unless a practical approach to Brexit negotiations is adopted, we all stand to lose out in terms of reduced economic growth, investment and jobs.”
The Waterford Gift Voucher encourages shopping in Waterford and helps boost the local economy. The Voucher Scheme was launched in 2013 and has been strongly supported by many employers in Waterford – directly helping over 130 participating businesses (full list here).
As year-end approaches, we ask employers to consider the Waterford Gift Voucher when rewarding their employees for Christmas or performance-related bonuses. This form of support will make a significant difference as we work to protect existing jobs and drive the local economy.
Under the Revenue Commissioners approved ‘Small Benefit Exemption’ scheme, a company can award staff up to €500 as a once-off payment, tax free.
Please call 051 872639 to place your order and specify the total amount of vouchers and the denominations required.
Should you require additional information on the scheme, or wish to meet to discuss any details, then please contact us at 051 872639 or
Where: The Parlour Vintage Tea Rooms, 2 Georges St, Waterford
Waterford Chamber Skillnet, Department of Social Protection, Waterford City LES, & Waterford Area Partnership will host an employer event on Wednesday 7th December in Parlour Vintage Tearooms from 10.00-12.00.
This event will offer an opportunity to local employers to find out about the incentives and resources available to them and their business.
Employers are encouraged to drop along any time on the morning to enjoy cream tea as well as a chat to representatives from the organising agencies.
to let us know if you are available to join us.