More than half of exporting businesses here have seen their exports increase this year compared to last year, despite the impact of Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic.

That is according to a new survey carried out by Enterprise Ireland which also found 91% expect to see their sales rise again next year.

The key growth markets identified by client companies are North America, Europe and the UK.

80% of firms reported that digitalisation was a priority over the next year.

Just under two thirds said advancing their sustainability agenda and adapting to climate change was a priority.

The survey was carried out ahead of Enterprise Ireland’s International Markets, which will see over 700 companies meet virtually with 140 market advisors from 40 overseas offices, during over 1600 individual meetings over five days.

"It is really encouraging to see our research pointing to business optimism and this is testament to the resilience and performance of Irish exporters despite Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic," said Leo Clancy the CEO of Enterprise Ireland.

"So far in 2021, we have seen these companies win a total of 965 new contracts and establish 375 new overseas presences against that backdrop of what are still difficult trading conditions."

"With global recovery, there are significant opportunities for Irish companies to accelerate their growth internationally and International Markets Week will play a critical role in driving this agenda."

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The International Markets Week launch event will hear from Rosy Temple, CEO of Magee Clothing, Tom O'Leary, CIO of ICON and Fidelma McGuirk, CEO of Payslip, on each of their businesses’ plans for growth in overseas markets and advancing the important digitalisation and sustainability agendas.