Survey Results

In the second Economic Trends survey of 2023, Cork Chamber asked members about their experience of the most recent business quarter, Q2 2023 (April, May, June) and on the business outlook for the third quarter of 2023. This Economic Trends Survey captures a snapshot of business experiences and of the overall operating landscape. 



This survey also gathered business priorities for the upcoming Budget 2024 including, how to utilise the budget surplus, and housing and climate action measures.


55% of respondents reported they want to see cost of living measures as the number one priority in Budget 2024. 49% reported that supply side housing stimulus should be a focal point in the upcoming budget and 34% called for the budget surplus to be used to finance it. 



Targeted and timebound VAT reduction for construction activity came out as the top priority action that government should undertake to address the supply of housing in the upcoming budget, followed by accelerated capital allowances for apartment development and increasing the income threshold for cost rental.


“It is positive to see that business confidence remains high at 97%. This confidence has been evident through the quarter with a wealth of investment and growth plans announced by businesses across the region. Budget 2024 will be an important moment for government to match that optimism and willingness to invest with constructive and strategic financing for the key economic enablers,” said Ronan Murray, President of Cork Chamber.


“Despite inflation and changing consumer spending, businesses are continuing to expand and have sustained strong hiring numbers this quarter with 41% reporting an increase to employee numbers and only 7% having decreased their staff numbers. As businesses continue to adapt to a changing environment, Permanent TSB remains committed to supporting the business community,” commented Auriol Kelly, Business Banking Manager at Permanent TSB.


The ranking of the top barriers to filling vacancies remain unchanged from last quarter, with specialist skills shortages persistently presenting the greatest challenge to businesses since Q2 2022, with housing and wage demands both posing barriers to 21% of respondents. The 20-hour work limit for non-EU workers was also raised as a key barrier.


View more stats and results from our latest Economic Trends, which capture a snapshot of business experiences and of the overall operating landscape at the close of Q2 2023.


Irish Heart Foundation is this quarter's nominated charity to receive a €200 gift card.