Dara Keogh: Chief executive of GeoDirectory
THE number of shop units in Limerick which are empty fell slightly in the second quarter of this year, new figures show.
The latest GeoView Commercial Vacancy Rates report, show Limerick’s rate was down to 15.1%, from 15.9% as against the same period in 2017.
The national commercial vacancy rate stands at 13.1%, with 14 counties recording a decline in commercial vacancy rates compared to only two counties at the same period in 2017.
As part of its analysis, GeoDirectory carried out a study of 80 towns, including Newcastle West, whose vacancy rate stood at 22.3%, and Abbeyfeale, the town with the lowest commercial vacancy rate in the county at 14.5%.
The commercial vacancy rate in Limerick City was 17.4%.
Dara Keogh, the chief executive of GeoDirectory said, “We are beginning to see evidence that the economic recovery is taking hold outside of Dublin, albeit at a slow pace. Some 14 counties recorded a drop in commercial vacancy rates in the year to date, compared to only two at this point last year. While this is a positive development, economic activity is still centred around Dublin, with Connacht, Ulster and the Midlands lagging behind.”
Annette Hughes, EY-DKM Economic Consultants said: “The national vacancy rate has fallen by nearly half a percentage point to June 2018 compared with the corresponding level in June 2017, with over half the counties in Ireland registering a decline. However, the stubbornly high commercial vacancy rates in western counties remain a concern, with Connacht, on average, 4pp higher than Leinster.”