Foyle Port and Har­bour chief Mcgrath is new head of Lon­don­derry Cham­ber

Belfast Telegraph - Business Telegraph - - News - BY STAFF REPORTER

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

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