The Ibec Podcast series
Keep up to date on the latest news and insights from Ibec with our podcast series, available to subscribe to and download on iTunes and Soundcloud.
On the most recent episode, Ibec's Alison Wrynn and Aidan Sweeney join Director of Property Industry Ireland David Duffy to discuss 'Better Housing: Increasing affordability and supply'. This joint report from Ibec and PII highlights what the major challenges are and offers practical recommendations to deliver better housing and a better quality of life for all.
Ibec begins Budget 2019 process
A team of representatives led by Edel Creely, Ibec President, and Fergal O’Brien, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, participated in the National Economic Dialogue at Dublin Castle on June 27 and 28.
In advance of Budget 2019, Ibec is highlighting the need to focus on new supports for the indigenous enterprise sector including the development of a meaningful employee stock ownership scheme that helps indigenous SMEs attract and retain talent, and a significant overhauling of the capital gains tax regime to bring it into line with the wider corporate tax regime for business investments.
Other measures sought include amending the Employment Investment and Incentive Scheme to make it a more effective financing option for SMEs and a major fiscal response to address the crisis in higher education funding.
Ibec’s full Budget 2019 submission will be launched on Monday, 16 July, and will include a detailed series of recommendations.
Irish economy to grow by 5.6% in 2018
In the Quarterly Economic Outlook Q1 2018, Ibec forecasts growth of 5.6% in the current year with a buoyant consumer economy growing by 2.6% in volume terms. All indicators now point to growth clearly benefiting households through improving wages and incomes.
In the labour market, 2018 will see employment reach record levels with over 2.2 million people at work and the economy approaching full employment. In addition, Irish workers are experiencing the fastest real wage growth in Europe. As a result, total household purchasing power, excluding borrowing, has never been greater in the history of the State.
Planning process review urgently required
Ireland has set out its stall as a globalised economy that is open for business and investment. As the Apple Athenry case recently demonstrated, our planning system as presently constituted does not support this vision and urgently requires to be reviewed.
Projects of the magnitude proposed by Apple are capable of generating very substantial direct value and spin-offs to the economy and can act as catalysts for effective regional development. It is therefore worrying that Ireland’s planning regime is increasingly seen by potential investors as a bureaucratic black hole.
Even in situations where there is a broad range of interests in favour of investment, there are examples where the system appears to be perversely stacked against commercial development. The situation is not helped by a continuing lack of legal clarity on environmental impact assessments, and by the ease with which vexatious claims can be brought with little or no risk. However, it is uncertainty over decision timelines – whether for planning consent or for the almost inevitable judicial review – that is arguably the biggest hindrance.
KeepWell Summit 2018
On 21 June over 300 HR and occupational health and safety professionals, business leaders and wellness managers gathered for the inaugural KeepWell Summit in Croke Park.
This event explored the strategies smart organisations are employing to contribute to the wellness of their employees. It featured a mix of key note sessions, short TedTalk style presentations and panel discussions. Contributions were heard from wellness experts and companies at various stages along the wellness journey.
Highlights included Neil O’Brien, wellness expert and motivational speaker who led the discussion around the future of wellness, Chris Flack the founder and CEO of UnPlug who opened our eyes to reality of constantly being ‘connected’ to technology and the effect on personal wellbeing and Lisa Wilkinson the director of The Elbow Room on work-life balance, who also led the crowd in a series of mindfulness exercises.
We hope to make this an annual event so watch this space for updates. In the meantime sign-up to the Ibec Wellness Roundup – our monthly ezine that delivers content on corporate wellness related topics gathered from a variety of trusted sources, by clicking the link here.