Sources of support - Northern Ireland

Information about agencies and associations in Northern Ireland who offer business advice, training and other forms of support.

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Goods and Customs

The Department of the Economy Northern Ireland are responsible for economic policy, employment and skills programmes, consumer affairs, tourism and a suite of other resonsibilities.

The Department for Business and Trade support businesses to invest, grow and export, creating jobs and opportunities across the country. Includes a link to find business finance and grants.

An A to Z of local councils in Northern Ireland. Choose your local council to see what supports they provide for businesses.

NI Chamber is a designated authority for the issue of certified export documents including UK Certificates of Origin, EUR1 Movement Certificates, and ATA Carnets. NI Chamber’s export documentation team will provide tailored guidance to businesses regarding export documentation.

The Chamber plays a vital role in maintaining focus on the value of two-way trade between the United Kingdom and Ireland, for business, for the governments and for communities. The Chamber enables vital access between governments, policymakers, industry and employers for the benefit of all.

Get your exporting questions answered and access support for UK businesses.

Guidance on how to prepare if you trade and move goods in and out of Northern Ireland.

Further detail on the arrangements giving effect to the Windsor Framework.

Invest Northern Ireland works directly with businesses across Northern Ireland providing information and advice for businesses wanting to grow and move into new markets.

Northern Ireland Customs & Trade Academy (NICTA) is a learning platform preparing traders for the processes involved in moving goods under the Northern Ireland Protocol.

    Manufacturing NI is a campaigning organisation which works with member companies, workforce representatives, policymakers and regulators to challenge and encourage change in areas which impact on the cost of doing business, specifically rates, energy, labour, Brexit and challenges such as Covid-19.

    Innovate NI is a Department for the Economy initiative, delivered by Invest Northern Ireland. Find lots of information about the process of creating and implementing ideas for new products, services or processes to create value in your business. 


    Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) is the lead body responsible for the promotion and enforcement of health and safety at work standards in Northern Ireland.

    The Trading Standards Service is responsible for enforcing over 160 pieces of legislation, covering a wide breadth of sectors and practices.


    Cross Border Partnership Employment Services (CBPES) assist in the removal of barriers for job seekers, workers and employers who are seeking employment, working or employing on the island of Ireland.

    Border People provides information on your Right to Work across the border, Taxation, Access to Social Welfare & Healthcare, Commuting, etc.

    If you’re aged 18 and over and eligible to work in Northern Ireland, there are a range of free accredited courses are available to help you re-train and re-skill, through SKILL UP – the flexible skills programme.

     A free, impartial and confidential employment relations service to those engaged in industry, commerce and the public services. 

    Supporting businesses and public authorities and help them to promote good practice.

    Digital and Technology Support

    Invest NI’s E-business team can provide advice and support to export-focused businesses considering implementing Management Information Systems such as customer portals, e-commerce, finance systems, CRM, ERP/MRP systems, digital automation and other software that makes smarter use of data across the business.

    Climate and Sustainability

    The Together for our Planet campaign encourages small businesses to pledge to cut their emissions to net zero by 2050 or sooner, while helping them grow, adapt and seize new opportunities.
    The UK Business Climate Hub is a collaboration between the UK Government, businesses and business groups across the UK. The Hub is the UK partner of the SME Climate Hub, the global initiative which empowers small and medium-sized enterprises to take climate action.


    The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has responsibility for food, farming, environmental, fisheries, forestry and sustainability policy and the development of the rural sector in Northern Ireland. 


    The Rural Support Farm Hub has been developed to provide a practical, at-your-fingertips resource for the farming community across Northern Ireland.

    The Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) is the largest democratic voluntary organisation representing farmers and growers in Northern Ireland. Its central objective is to promote their interests both at home and abroad through professional lobbying.


    Retail NI is Northern Ireland’s only locally based retail and wholesale business organisation which provides professional advice and gives a voice to the independent sector at the NI Assembly and Westminster.


    In addition to providing a strong voice for the industry, Hospitality Ulster’s mission is to provide practical support, resources and accredited suppliers offering industry specific services.

    Arts and Culture

    The Arts Council is the official funding and development organisation for the arts in Northern Ireland.


    NI Business Info - Business support finder

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    Updated: October 2023