Cross-border workers ‘have taken major wage cut’ today

The sign at the entrance to the village of Muff.  (0306JB01)
The sign at the entrance to the village of Muff. (0306JB01)

People living in Donegal and working in the north have had their wages slashed today as the Brexit vote hit sterling, the President of Buncrana Chamber of Commerce has said.

Ryan Stewart told the Journal that the UK vote to leave the European Union would have massive implications in a whole plethora of ways for people living in the border region over the coming years.

“It is on so many levels,” he said. “The first thing is that anybody working in Northern Ireland and living in the south will have taken a 10% pay cut this morning.

“That leads to other problems such as people paying a mortgage, it is now going to be more expensive.”

In terms of what of what will happen in the coming years, Mr Stewart said there was a lot of uncertainty.

“It is going to take two to three years before anybody really knows what will happen.

“For now the drop in sterling for Inishowen is huge, for local trade, for local farmers’ exports to Northern Ireland could be affected.”

He added that within two to three years there was however “a distinct possibility you could end up having to show your passport going to work”.

“It has created so much uncertainty,” he said. “Down the line if there are border checks there won’t be able to go on a beer run to Asda because it could be confiscated.”

Mr Stewart said that the 78% remain vote registered in Foyle shows the importance of free trade and free movement across the border for local people.