Northern Ireland is least productive region in UK – BBC

Low productivity is the biggest economic challenge facing Northern Ireland, according to research by Queen's University Belfast.
Productivity measures the amount of output per worker.
It matters because higher productivity means higher wages and better living standards.
The researchers found Northern Ireland was the least productive region in the UK and lagged 17% behind the UK average.
The findings are from the Northern Ireland Productivity Dashboard created by Dr David Jordan and Prof John Turner from Queen's Management School.
"Low productivity is the biggest economic challenge facing Northern Ireland," Dr Jordan said.
The dashboard looked at 18 different drivers and found in Northern Ireland that 11 of the 18 were worse than the UK average, including economic inactivity, employer training and foreign direct investment.
One of the only two drivers where Northern Ireland outperforms the UK average is connectivity.
The research found gigabit-capable internet services in Northern Ireland were the best in the UK, reflecting recent investment.
Northern Ireland also lags behind the Republic of Ireland, where productivity is about 29% higher than the UK average.
"The Northern Ireland Productivity Dashboard shows the weak state of the Northern Ireland economy," Prof Turner explained.
"It also reveals what Northern Ireland needs to work on if it is to have a prosperous future.
"None of this, however, will be possible without a stable government in Stormont."
An executive has not been in place since February when the Democratic Unionist Party withdrew from the first minister's position as part of its ongoing protest against the Northern Ireland Protocol.
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