Important to channel substantial resources appropriately
No question that this week’s Budget delivered on Ibec’s asks of Government. The largest Budget in the history of the State gives us the scale of resources to address the scale of our problem. However, it needs to be channelled into business and society efficiently and effectively.
Business has provided Government with the resources to fund the support for those worse impacted whether they be workers or businesses. The notion that Government is bailing out business is a limited perspective, with the evidence showing that it is business that is providing the resources. We should be optimistic that the corporation tax receipts of at least €13 billion this year will continue to carry our nation through these difficult times.
This unprecedented Budget has been achieved through Ibec’s Reboot and Reimagine campaign, our inputs to the July Stimulus plan and a very active pre-Budget lobbying period. The Budget is ambitious in providing a strong stimulus for the economy; it has a good shape, pushes ahead on the investment agenda and targeted enterprise supports; and it has lots of scope for further measures as we work through the details with Government on the contingency funds for Covid and Brexit. The next critical steps are follow-up engagement to shape specific measures, starting with inputs to the National Economic Plan next week and work with the new Commission on Taxation and Social Welfare and through the review of the National Development Plan over the coming weeks.
On Covid restrictions, Government needs to define the strategic goal it is pursuing to ensure greater buy in and galvanise all stakeholders. Is it elimination or suppression? This must be defined rather than limping along from one dramatic announcement to the next. Coordination on this shared island is also clearly needed, between both governments and stakeholders. The structures and mechanisms to deliver more effective all island coordination exist, but they must be activated and backed. How business can support this will be a key discussion at an event next week hosted jointly by Ibec and the CBI Northern Ireland at which Commissioner Mairead McGuinness and others will speak. You can register your attendance here.
I would also like to invite you to attend a conversation I will host with Nick Clegg, EVP, Global Affairs and Communications, Facebook and while no longer associated with UK politics, his perspective will be timely if you like to register your attendance here.
Finally, I hope you can join me for an immersing session at next Thursday’s Ibec HR Leadership Summit for which we have a superb line up to reimagine our workforce and workplace. Gary Hamel will present a workshop on his new book ‘Humanocracy’ which should challenge us all to think differently. I very much hope you get to take a conscious break from this week's developments.