Slightly over one fifth of businesses returned to air travel in Q3 2021. Increased uptake from Q1 2022, with 32% air travel for business expected. 


However, 64% of respondents expect air travel for business in 2022 to be under 40% of 2019 levels.


"We anticipate this perspective will evolve over time as confidence in international travel grows. In the survey businesses reiterated the value of connectivity to Cork and the top three critical routes for business - London, Amsterdam, and Frankfurt respectively." Paula Cogan, President of Cork Chamber


In the latest Cork Chamber Economic Trends Survey, Cork Chamber asked members about their experience in the most recent business quarter, Q3 2021 (July, August, September) as well as the business outlook for the remainder of the year, the fourth quarter of 2021. This Economic Trends captures a snapshot of business experiences and the overall operating landscape, in a period which saw a business transition back to the office and an easing of Covid 19 restrictions.

Our thanks to everyone for taking the time to complete this survey, which is circulated to the managers and business owners of our 1,000+ members. Your feedback helps us build a more resilient economy for Cork. The winner of our Q3 participants prize is JP Kelly, Head of Geospatial Consulting at Murphy Geospatial who will receive a €200 Cork Chamber giftcard.

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1. COVID-19


2. Cost competitiveness 


3. Skills availability


As with previous quarters, Covid-19 ranks as the top threat to business growth.

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With 91% of respondents reporting business confidence, this is a 1% increase on the previous quarter (Q2 2021) which noted 90% of respondents indicating confidence. This is an encouraging trend, in comparison to 68% confidence 12 months ago in Q3 of 2020.

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In Q3 2021 56% expect an increase to employee numbers, which aligns with current reopening and expectation of the Christmas season ahead. 


"61% of businesses have open job vacancies yet 42% are reporting difficulty in filling open roles. Skills is firmly on the agenda for all. The current confidence must be harnessed, and indigenous businesses should be especially supported to benefit from an investment in education, skills, apprenticeships, and trades for an evolving workforce.’’ ." Paula Cogan, President of Cork Chamber