The new President of the employers' confederation, Ibec, is the chief executive of State forestry company, Imelda Hurley.

She succeeds Frank Gleeson, who is the President and CEO of Aramark Northern Europe.

"Imelda is a recognised leader in the field of Irish and European business and her experience and insights will no doubt support our efforts over the coming year to help navigate the economy through a challenging period," said Danny McCory, Ibec chief executive.

"We look forward to working with her and wish her great success."

A graduate of the University of Limerick, Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and an alumna of Harvard Business School, Ms Hurley has been in leadership and finance roles across a variety of sectors over the past two decades.

She has also served as an executive and non-executive director of a range of public, private and State-owned businesses in Ireland and around the world.

As well as leading Coillte, she is also currently a non-executive director of fruit and vegetable distributor, Dole plc.

Prior to joining the forestry company, she served as an executive director and chief financial officer with agri-services group, Origin Enterprises.

She has also previously worked in a number of senior leadership positions at PCH International and Greencore and is a former non-executive director of Total Produce, Valeo Foods and Ervia.

"It is a privilege to be appointed Ibec President for the next 12 months," she said.

"While the economy faces unprecedented inflationary competitiveness challenges at present, it is important that we do not lose focus in meeting the long-term strategic issues we face as a society, particularly the climate emergency crisis."