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Brooks, T, Ewuga, D, Scott, L and Spillane, J (2018) The Impact of Brexit on Cross-Border Trade by the Construction Sector in Ireland: An Exploratory Study. In: Gorse, C and Neilson, C J (Eds.), Proceedings 34th Annual ARCOM Conference, 3-5 September 2018, Queen’s University, Belfast, UK. Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 109–118.
- Type: Conference Proceedings
- Keywords: Brexit, Fragmentation, Co-operation, Ireland
- ISBN/ISSN: 978-0-9955463-2-5
- URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/cdf2bb4790db43bd11cb07cf524f5731.pdf
Cross-border and local co-operation can foster local learning and contribute positively to business performance and social cohesion. This paper considers construction firms' economic motivation for both types of co-operation around the Ireland – Northern Ireland border. This area, while inevitably impacted by the Brexit uncertainty, shares many of the economic and developmental characteristics of border areas throughout Europe. Overall, around a third of firms in Ireland and Northern Ireland engage in local co-operation of some form; around one in six in Northern Ireland and one in twelve in Ireland also engage in cross-border co- operation. The purpose of the study was to investigate the impact of Brexit on cross border trade by the Construction sector in Ireland and investigate the current tensions and barriers to that sector. A qualitative methodology adopted a literature review and semi structured interview strategy. Data was collected from purposively selected contractors in the North and South of Ireland who have recent experience of cross border construction. Qualitative analysis identified themes and issues arising which enabled examination of commonalities and differences between the respondents. Differing regulatory regimes, perceived barriers to cross-border co-operation and uncertainty reduce the incidence of cross-border co-operation rates below that of local co-operation. The findings provide an insight into the lack of Brexit preparedness of industry on both sides of the border. The study established that there is a need for more industry specific research regarding the level of existing cross border trade and the measures that could be adopted to resist fragmentation and integrate Irish cross border construction trade in the context of Brexit.