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Good News Friday – New Executive strategy promises vital infrastructure investment!

It’s Good News Friday as this week we celebrate the launch of the Executive’s draft Investment Strategy!

The Executive published its new draft Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland (ISNI) earlier this week. The draft strategy sets out an approach to multi-billion-bound investment for infrastructure projects including new roads, schools, hospitals, social housing, and public transport. It sets out the Executive’s priorities for investment over the next 30 years.

Over £1.6 billion of capital expenditure per annum will be injected into the NI public sector every year as part of the Strategy. It will be set against the immediate priority of recovery from Covid-19 and adaptation to Brexit. However, it will also deal with the long-term emerging trends like resilience to climate change, meeting the needs of a growing ageing population, and new technologies.

No individual projects are set out in the investment Strategy, and as a Chamber, we will be utilising the public consultation to voice our clear desire for the North West to be prioritised in any infrastructure development. This includes the continued support of City of Derry Airport and the funding of projects like the A5 and the North-West Transport Hub as part of a properly funded investment programme to bolster transport connectivity for the North West.

With the Consultation open until 20 April, we would encourage all Chamber members to support our ask for the Executive to prioritise regional infrastructure and connectivity in our region over the coming years. You can view the draft Strategy, and respond to the Consultation, using the following link: https://isni.gov.uk/.

Reacting to the publication of the Executive’s draft Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland, Aidan O’Kane, Chamber President, said:

“It is welcome to see the Executive publish its draft Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland, an exciting document which promises to inject billions of pounds of much-needed investment into our economy. This Strategy reflects both the immediate challenges facing businesses like Covid-19 and Brexit, but also recognises the need for long-term, strategic infrastructure development over the next 30 years.”

“The North West is brimming with economic potential, and this Strategy offers a real opportunity for the Executive to support our regional economy in its continued growth. It’s vital that this Strategy, alongside the Budget and the upcoming Programme for Government, must form part of the Executive’s strategic objective of addressing economic regional imbalance, especially for the North West City Region. Investment in key pillars of our local economy such as the City of Derry Airport must be prioritised as this Strategy is implemented.”