The drop in strength of the GBP has been widely reported as detrimental to Ireland’s agri-food sales in the UK, but now the fluctuating value is making our future uncertain.
After Theresa May’s speech yesterday January 17th, the pound experienced its biggest rise since 2008. It went up by a huge 2.5% yesterday after May explained in her leaked speech about having a parliamentary vote on Britain’s EU deal.
However, in the days previous, it was at a staggering low. Depending on bank rates, travellers were actually paying more than £1 per €1. The official figure was reported to be €1.14 for £1, which is still 30% lower than average.
The fluctuating values don’t give us a clear path for how we’re to continue on, as Irish agri-exporters are already tense. If the sterling officially falls to the value of the Euro, then our biggest trade partner won’t be in the position to offer farmers a particularly great deal on their goods.
Just last week, it was reported that the impact of Brexit on the Irish economy can now be properly quantified, and the results were not good. Bord Bia, according to RTÉ, assessed the effects that the fall in sterling value has had on Irish agri-exports, including drink.
In 2016, Brexit cost €570 million to the Irish food and drink export trade. This figure was put forward by Bord Bia’s yearly Export Review and Prospects Report.
The organisation also says that we should expect continued difficulties in the face of the sterling value drop.