A survey has found that more than half of Wexford business owners questioned have highlighted Covid as the main threat to their business over the past year.
The survey was distributed to a wide range of businesses across County Wexford, including sole traders, micro enterprises, multinationals and businesses, with a varying number of employees ranging from 11 to 100.
‘The County Wexford Chamber Business Community Survey has received a great response. We felt that it was important to gauge what issues were most prevalent among businesses across County Wexford to allow us to build these issues into our lobbying schedule,’ director of operations with the chamber Emma Dunphy said.
Most of the businesses who completed the survey were micro enterprises at 49 per cent, followed by businesses with 11 to 50 employees at 23 per cent. It was also found that the professional services sector was the most popular sector to participate in the survey, followed by the wholesale and retail sector.
Covid-19 was ranked the number one challenge that businesses across County Wexford are currently facing, with 54 per cent of businesses ranking it as number one. This was followed by Brexit and then a domestic recession.
Thirty-eight per cent of businesses estimate that the time it will take them to return to business as normal once they reopen will be six to 12 months. This was followed by 30 per cent stating that it would take 12 to 24 months to return to normal. Following on from this, these businesses were questioned about how long they would require Covid-19 financial supports to remain in place.
While 30 per cent said they were not required for their business, 25 per cent said that supports would be required for a further 10 to 12 months.
‘From the results received it is clear that businesses across County Wexford require further supports, clearer guidelines and a greater response from Government. Our findings demonstrate that businesses across County Wexford require further Covid-19 grants and guidance supports from Government,’ Ms Dunphy said.
This was followed by a desire for the commercial rates waiver continuing and reduced VAT and tax by Government to support businesses impacted.
‘We are very conscious of the frustration felt at present and our focus in County Wexford Chamber is to ensure that these businesses are supported to get through the crisis, and that Government take radical action to ensure that our local economy is supported to recover.’