Annual Northern Ireland Economic Conference 2018

Addressing economic challenges:
Brexit • Low Growth • Poor Productivity

When

Thursday 8th November 2018

Where

Armagh City Hotel

Northern Ireland's economic summit

The Northern Ireland Economic Conference, now in its 23rd year, is Northern Ireland’s premier economic analysis event and is unique in being the only forum which takes a high level look at the performance of, and prospects for the local economy. It is firmly established as the annual autumn ‘summit’ for Northern Ireland’s economic community, including policy makers and business leaders. Taking place at a time of unprecedented political chaos, this is a not-to-be-missed event for all the latest information on the local economy as well as an excellent opportunity for networking and discussion with key players in the economy, across all sectors.


The lost decade

The 2018 conference comes at an economic cross-roads for the region. After a decade of no real growth in the economy, we face the challenge of Brexit and local political uncertainty against a backdrop of plummeting productivity. This year’s conference will bring together a platform of expert speakers to look at these issues in depth and to give delegates some sense as to what the future might hold. The themes covered in the programme will include:

The medium-term outlook for the Northern Ireland economy
A highlight of the annual Northern Ireland Economic Conference is the in-depth review of the performance of the local economy and a medium term forecast of the key economic parameters. This is undertaken by the Economic Policy Centre in Ulster University using its economic model of the Northern Ireland economy.

The economic impact of Brexit
By the date of the conference we should know how the final stages of the negotiations for the UK to leave the European Union are panning out. Visiting expert Nina Skero, who is Head of Macroeconomics at the Centre for Economics and Business Research, will give delegates an insight into the economic impact of Brexit. Keynote speaker Philip Stephens from the Financial Times will look not only at Brexit but how other major changes in world politics, including the economic policies of US President Donald Trump will affect the global economy.

A tale of two economies on the island of Ireland
In contrast to the poor performance of the Northern Ireland economy, the Republic of Ireland is seeing one of the highest growth rates in the world. There is now a stark divergence in the two economies on the island. Leaving the politics to one side, this year’s conference will once again look to contrast both economies and look to all-island issues where both jurisdictions can benefit.

Tackling the productivity crisis
This session will include several expert speakers who will look at the drivers of Northern Ireland’s productivity. The UK has a “productivity crisis” and Northern Ireland’s productivity has been 20 per cent below the UK average for the last decade. Speakers will investigate what can be done locally to address the various drivers of productivity in Northern Ireland. These include:

  • The pivotal role of third level education in productivity;
  • How we can drive exports;
  • The importance of innovation and research and development in the economy;
  • The quality of employment in Northern Ireland;
  • Productivity in manufacturing;
  • Infrastructure investment as a driver of productivity.

Speakers include

Conference speaker panel

Dame Kate
Barker
DBE

Commissioner
National Infrastructure Commission

Dr Esmond
Birnie

Senior Economist
Ulster University Economic Policy Centre

John
Campbell

Economics and Business Editor
BBC Northern Ireland

David
Gavaghan

Chief Executive
Aurora Prime Real Estate Limited

Paul
Gosling

Financial Journalist

Clare
Guinness

Chief Executive
Warrenpoint Harbour Authority

Chris
Hale

Director of Policy
Universities UK

Dr Katy
Hayward

Senior Lecturer and Research Fellow
Queen’s University Belfast

Conor
Lambe

Chief Economist
Danske Bank

Trevor
Lockhart

Chair
CBI Northern Ireland

Seamus
McAleavey

Chief Executive
NICVA

Steve
Orr

Director
Catalyst Inc

Nina
Skero

Head of Macroeconomics
Centre for Economics and Business Research

Richard
Smith

General Manager
Huhtamaki Lurgan Ltd

Philip
Stephens

Associate Editor
Financial Times

Dr Lisa
Wilson

Economist
Nevin Economic Research Institute

Roger
Wilson

Chief Executive
Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council

Conference Programme

08:30

Registration & morning coffee

09:00
ECONOMIC FORECAST
LOCAL ECONOMY
KEYNOTE ADDRESS

THE NORTHERN IRELAND ECONOMIC OUTLOOK


CHAIRMAN'S INTRODUCTION
John Campbell, Economics and Business Editor
BBC Northern Ireland


Welcome

Councillor Julie Flaherty, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council


The Northern Ireland medium term economic outlook
Dr Esmond Birnie, Senior Economist
Ulster University Economic Policy Centre


The local economy: Greater investment, more jobs and enhanced quality of life
Roger Wilson, Chief Executive
Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council


Keynote address:
The impact of Brexit, Trump and an increasingly chaotic world on the global economy

Philip Stephens, Associate Editor
Financial Times


Questions & answers / Panel discussion

10:45

Morning coffee / networking opportunity

11.15
INFRASTRUCTURE
EMPLOYMENT
HIGHER EDUCATION
EXPORTS
MANUFACTURING

THE PRODUCTIVITY CRISIS


Infrastructure as a driver of productivity and growth
Dame Kate Barker DBE, Commissioner
National Infrastructure Commission


The quality of employment in Northern Ireland and the impact on the economy
Dr Lisa Wilson, Economist
Nevin Economic Research Institute


The impact of Brexit on Higher Education
Chris Hale, Director of Policy
Universities UK


Growing the export economy
Clare Guinness, Chief Executive
Warrenpoint Harbour Authority


Addressing the productivity crisis: A manufacturing perspective
Richard Smith, General Manager
Huhtamaki


Questions & answers / Panel discussion

13:00

Lunch / networking opportunity

14.00
BREXIT
NORTH WEST
FUTURE OF WORK
REGIONAL CITIES

WHAT NEXT FOR THE ECONOMY?


The impact of Brexit on the economy: What lies ahead?
Nina Skero, Head of Macroeconomics
Centre for Economics and Business Research


Driving economic growth in the North West
Paul Gosling, Financial journalist / commentator


Growing the knowledge economy in Northern Ireland
Steve Orr, Director
Catalyst Inc


Investing in regional cities for a more balanced economy
Professor Edgar Morgenroth, Professor of Economics
Dublin City University (invited)


Questions & answers / Panel discussion


BREXIT PANEL: WHAT NEXT?
David Gavaghan, Founder, Aurora Prime Real Estate Limited
Dr Katy Hayward, Reader in Sociology, Queen's University Belfast
Conor Lambe, Chief Economist, Danske Bank
Trevor Lockhart, Chief Executive, Fane Valley and Chair, CBI Northern Ireland
Seamus McAleavey, Chief Executive, NICVA

16:45

Conference Close


Testimonials

“Really interesting range of speakers bringing wide cross-section of views”
“First rate conference – excellent standard”
“Excellent and very professional organisation – great insight into the challenges facing the economy”
“Impressive range of speakers”

Why is this conference for you?

Who should attend?

The Annual Northern Ireland Economic Conference is aimed at key decision-makers and those across business and government/the public sector with an interest in tackling the challenges to ensure Northern Ireland’s economy is fit for the future. It will also appeal to those interacting with the public sector, both in policy advisory and service delivery or advocacy roles.

Those interested in attending will include:


Chief Executives / Directors / senior managers
Finance directors / managers
Central government / department officials
Agencies, advisory bodies and NDPBs
Frontline service delivery professionals
Auditors / value-for-money specialists
Local government officers and elected representatives
Budget-holders
Corporate planners
Voluntary / community sector leaders / NGOs
Services organisations – IT / telecoms
Financial and legal advisors

Pricing & Registration

Numbers limited so reserve your place now!

Don’t miss Northern Ireland’s only annual one day economic conference!
Benefits of attending include:

Expert local and visiting speakers
Major economic summit
Economic outlook and forecast
Unique information presented
Not-to-be-missed annual conference
Unrivalled networking opportunity
All sectors represented – government, business, third sector



Conference delegate rate
£255 + VAT @ 20% = £306

Fee includes documentation, lunch and other refreshments served during the conference and is payable in advance.

Discounted rate for voluntary/community sectors
£165 + VAT @ 20% = £198

Fee includes documentation, lunch and other refreshments served during the conference and is payable in advance.

Discounted rate for local government
£165 + VAT @ 20% = £198

Fee includes documentation, lunch and other refreshments served during the conference and is payable in advance.




Sponsorship and Exhibition Opportunities

There are still a small number of available sponsorship opportunities at this year’s conference. Sponsorship of the annual Northern Ireland Economic Conference is an excellent way for organisations to raise their profile with a key audience of economic decision-makers and senior business leaders. For further details or to discuss how your organisation can benefit from close association with Northern Ireland’s premier economic analysis event, contact Olivia Carragher on +44 (0) 28 9261 9933. or email olivia.carragher@agendani.com

Networking Opportunities

The conference is structured in a way to provide a high level of interaction between speakers and delegates.

There will be plentiful opportunities for questions as well as discussion in each of the sessions. In the breaks and margins of the event there will also be ample scope for business development.



Location and Venue

Venue

Armagh City Hotel, 2 Friary Rd, Armagh BT60 4FR

Please Note: When using a sat nav please do not use our postcode; because this will take you outside of Armagh, please use ‘2 Friary Road, Armagh’.