Foyle Port and Harbour chief Mcgrath is new head of Londonderry Chamber
THE new president of Londonderry Chamber of Commerce has vowed to harness the potential of the region “on the doorstep of Europe”.
Brian Mcgrath, who is currently the chief executive of Foyle Port and Harbour, has been appointed as the 76th president of the Chamber of Commerce.
Mr Mcgrath was appointed at the chamber’s annual general meeting last week. He is taking over from outgoing president, Jennifer Mckeever, who is a co-director of transport firm Airporter.
In his address to members, Mr Mcgrath highlighted the challenges that 2019 will bring, in particular Brexit.
But he said there were also opportunities from continuing work to develop a City Deal proposal for the north west region.
In his Budget earlier this year, Chancellor Philip Hammond said negotiations would be opening up on a City Deal for Londonderry.
Mr Mcgrath will be supported in the role by Redmond Mcfadden, the head of Danske Bank’s western region finance centre, who becomes the chamber’s new vice president.
Speaking after his appointment, Mr Mcgrath said:“it is an honour to be elected as the new president of the Londonderry Chamber of Commerce.
“I would like to pay tribute to our outgoing president, Jennifer Mckeever, who has done a tremendous job in representing our membership over the last year.”
He said he expected 2019 to be a challenging year. “The next 12 months will bring unprecedented upheaval for businesses right across Northern Ireland and it is hugely important that they have a strong voice during these uncertain times,” he said.
“We will be listening intently to the membership during this time.
“Over the next year, I would like to ensure that the chamber continues to provide strong guidance, leadership and support to its members.
“I will also be keen to demonstrate that the north west city region remains open for business despite the uncertainties, and I am determined to meet these challenges head on.
“Our geographical location on the doorstep to Europe is going to be critical for us, and this must be both promoted and harnessed in the coming months.”
Mr Mcgrath’s counterpart on Belfast Chamber of Commerce is Rajesh Rana, the director of hotel group Andras Hotels, who was appointed in June.
Taking over: Brian Mcgrath