Memorandum submitted by Newry and Mourne
Thank you for giving Newry and Mourne District
Council the opportunity to submit evidence on the above issue
to the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee.
Newry and Mourne District Council at a recent
Council meeting discussed this issue in detail. Given Newry and
Mourne is a border location that has strong economic links with
neighbours in the Republic of Ireland, the Council believe that
if a tax on aggregates was imposed it would severely disadvantage
local businesses involved in the building trade and related suppliers.
Given that in the Republic of Ireland there
is no such tax local companies would be at a severe disadvantage
when tendering for contracts across the border.
Many businesses in Newry and Mourne rely on
the Republic of Ireland as a market. Over recent years due to
exchange rate variations local companies have had to totally transform
the manner in which they do business in order to overcome that
unfair disadvantage resulting from the exchange rate variation
in order to retain business. Despite improving efficiency in many,
if not all, instances profit margins have been drastically reduced.
If a further tax was imposed on the building
industry, this Council believes strongly that it would have a
serious effect on the viability of many businesses and thus threaten
26 October 2001