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British Irish Business Space

Joint Business Space

 Britain and Ireland have an interdependent trade relationship. This relationship extends across import and export figures and into areas like tourism, culture, investment and employment. Britain is ranked as the seventh easiest countries to do business with in the world and Ireland is ranked tenth making them natural trade partners.[1] Businesses looking to expand across the waters can do so with ease, as our Islands share a similar language and business culture.



British Subsidiaries in Ireland

 There is a large amount of British investment in Ireland. The top FTSE 100 British Companies own or partly own 771 businesses in Ireland. These British companies are registered as having subsidiaries, joint ventures or as being associates in an impressive number of businesses in Ireland, all of which are registered as high income businesses.[2]




Trade interdependence between Britain and Ireland is further demonstrated by the number of people applying for working permits in the two countries. The most recent figures by the Central Statistics Office show that 11,025 PPSN numbers were allocated to British nationals in 2009. [3] As business expands between the Islands, more and more businesses are setting up permanent offices across various regions in Britain and Ireland.


More significantly Irish registrations for British National Insurance Numbers (NINo) rose by 56% in the year 2010/11. Statistics from the Department of Work and Pensions show that 16,130 Irish people registered for a British NINo in 2010/11.[4] This shows that while increasing numbers of Irish are emigrating to the UK there is a greater cross over between the two nations than ever before demonstrating the improving trade relationship between the Islands.


Air Space


The most recent air traffic figures show that 9.7 million people flew between Britain and Ireland in 2011. At the height of the economic boom over 12.3 million people flew between Britain and Ireland.  While the number of flights may have dropped in recent years, 2011 was the first year that air traffic figures between the Islands rose since 2008. [5]



Ireland and Britain have an inter-reliant tourist trade. According to the latest figures by Fáilte Ireland 2.7 million British visitors travelled to Ireland in 2010, accounting for approximately half of all foreign visitors. This amounted to €976 million in revenue.[6] Irish tourism in Britain is equally important. 2.6 million Irish people visited Britain in 2010, accounting for 8.8% of the British tourist market and amounting to £883 million in revenue.[7]


The Short-stay Visa Waiver Programme was recently announced by the Irish Government as part of its Job Initiative to increase tourism jobs in Ireland in July 2011. British and Irish governments are now working together to encourage the flow of tourists between the Islands. This new programme means that general visitors to the UK will be able to travel to Ireland during the time frame of their British visa without needing to acquire an Irish tourist visa.[8]

[1] Doing Business (2011) Economy Rankings. http://www.doingbusiness.org/rankings (23 February 2012)

[2] Action Aid (2011) FTSE 100 Tax Haven Tracker. http://www.actionaid.org.uk/103031/FTSE_100_ tax_haven_tracker.html (21 February 2012)

[3] CSO (2012) FNA02: Employment Activity of Foreign Nationals by Broad Nationality Group, Year of Entry and Yea. http://www.cso.ie/px/pxeirestat/Statire/SelectVarVal/Define.asp?maintable=FNA02&PLanguage=0 (13 February 2012).

[4] Department of Work and Pensions (2011) National Insurance Number Allocations to Adult Overseas

Nationals Entering the UK – Registrations to March 2011. http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd1/niall /nino_allocations_aug11.pdf (21 February 2012).

[5] Civil Aviation Authority (2012) ‘International Passenger Traffic to and from Reporting Airports (in Thousands) by Country 2001 – 2011.’ UK Airport Statistics 2001-201. http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/80/airport_data/201112/ Table_11_International_Air_Pax_Traffic_to_from_UK_by_Country.pdf (20 February 2012).

[6] Fáilte Ireland (2011). Tourism Facts 2010. Preliminary Version 6.0. http://www.failteireland.ie/FailteCorp/ media/FailteIreland/documents/Research%20and%20Statistics/Tourism%20Facts/2010/Tourism-Facts-2010-version-6.pdf (22 February 2011)

[7] Visit Britain (2011) Inbound Tourism Facts. http://www.visitbritain.org/insightsandstatistics/ inboundtourismfacts/index.aspx (23 February 2012).

[8] Department of Justice and Equality (2011) The Short-stay Visa Waiver Programme – Information Note. http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/VWP%20Info%20NoteRev4-20111024.pdf/Files/VWP%20Info%20NoteRev4-20111024.pdf (21 February 2012)