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Q. Where should Ireland look to trade?

A. We should look to Middle East and Latin America, according to new trade forecast.

Image: Stuart Miles via Shutterstock

IRELAND SHOULD BE looking beyond its traditional export trade routes, according to a new forecast by HSBC.

The corporate section of the bank this morning released a trade forecast which stated that we could expect Irish exports to Europe to expand only by 3 to 4 per cent a year over the next seven years. In the medium-term (up to 2030), the estimate that growth of Irish exports to Europe will hover just under 5 per cent a year. Forty per cent of Ireland’s current export trade is with countries in the eurozone.

A similar figure is being forecast for growth to the UK and the US, at an average of 5 per cent a year until 2030.

On the bright side, Ireland’s trade relationship with China is strong, claimed HSBC – and said that there were bright prospects for trade with the Middle East and Latin America, especially in tech products. The forecast is that Irish exports to Middle East and Latin America would rise by 6 to 7 per cent a year from 2021 to 2030.

HSBC corporate banking MD Alan Duffy said:

Ireland’s export sector has been the sole bright spot in the economy this year, with its outperformance driven by a sharp improvement in competitiveness and Ireland’s focus on high value-added sectors such as high-tech industry.

Nevertheless, we can’t continue to rely on the Eurozone, US and the UK for our trade growth. Forward-thinking companies will have to exploit multiple trade corridors and partnerships particularly in emerging markets.

In a footnote to the forecast, Vietnam, Indonesia, Egypt, Turkey, Mexico and Poland are all being tipped for “significant” growth in trade over the next three years.

Read: Irish businesses to gather at London conference to increase exports>

Read: Opportunities for Irish companies in Africa highlighted>

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