FIGURES discussed at a recent Brexit meeting in Strabane have shown that thousands of people cross the local border on a daily basis.
According to statistics from the Department of Infrastructure, in any given 12 hour weekday there are 4,000 journeys from Strabane to the south and 6,700 journeys from the South to Strabane.
This represented over 1,850 motorists making a daily journey from Strabane to Ballybofey, 1,210 to Raphoe and 340 to Letterkenny. In addition, 2,970 journeys are made daily from Ballybofey to Strabane and 1,930 from Raphoe to Strabane.
Overall, motorists coming to and from Ballybofey, Letterkenny and Raphoe accounted for the bulk of daily border crossings to and from Strabane.
Explaining the figures at last week’s Brexit meeting in the Fir Trees, Ulster University Senior Economist Dr Eoin Magennis felt the effect on cross-border commuters in the event of a hard border would be substantial.
“There are large numbers of people commuting across the border everyday,” he said. “There is also big flow of people, white van workers and those in construction industry and trades.
“Although this is not so much an issue for the common traveller, those commuting will feel the effect of substantial delays and currency fluctuations.”
Also speaking at the meeting, managing director of O’Neill’s Kieran Kennedy said he is concerned for members of his workforce living across the border.
“Overall, the harsh reality of what Brexit means for staff is becoming clear,” he said. “As well as this, many of our staff living in the south have experienced a 20 per-cent wage drop as a result of devaluation in the Sterling since 2016.”
At the meeting Mr Kennedy said staff commute concerns post-Brexit is one of the factors behind proposed plans to purchase a five-acre site in Lifford, should a relocation become necessary.
Posted: 3:55 pm March 22, 2018