UK news MLA calls for an end to Invest NI’s ‘Belfast bias’ when dishing out cash last news
PremierLeague-News.Com - A “postcode lottery” persists when it comes to Invest NI funding, figures suggest.
PremierLeague-News.Com - Breaking Sport Transfer News ! "A “postcode lottery” persists when it comes to Invest NI funding, figures suggest. In the last five years Belfast firms received £130.2m in grants, compared to £18.19m in Foyle and £24.67m in Newry and Armagh.Since 2016/17 Invest NI has given financial assistance totalling just over £409m, including £78.5m in 2020/21.But there is a wide geographic disparity in where the cash ends up.Of the 18 constituencies here, the four in Belfast got 32% of the funding, with East Belfast receiving £28.4m and West Belfast £12m.Since 2016/17, East Antrim received the least amount at £6.6m, followed by North Down (£7.7m).
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.He said the majority of it was concentrated in greater Belfast, while places like his constituency and Foyle, which were both in need of equal or greater support, got far less assistance.“While raising our concerns we had long advocated for a review into Invest NI’s operations and played a key role in securing the independent review that is currently ongoing,” he said.“We believe this will help address the regional inequality that has been the hallmark of Invest NI’s tenure and help ensure that investment and job creation are spread more equally around the North.“This is especially important for regions that have received chronic underinvestment historically.“I welcome that the recent Invest NI board appointments included business leaders from across the North and hope the new CEO of the company will take on board the criticisms that have been directed at them over the years and do everything they can to address them.”Invest NI said: “Over the last five years almost 73% of the offers we made were to businesses outside Belfast, or to projects that have the potential to impact on multiple locations throughout Northern Ireland.“Sixty per cent of total investment (company and Invest NI support combined) and nearly 57% of new jobs were also outside Belfast.“Our support is demand-led and depends on businesses bringing forward growth projects, regardless of location.“It is wrong to infer that there is a specific allocation of support, or a bias towards, any area.“It is also important to highlight that Northern Ireland is a relatively small place and evidence indicates that many businesses draw their workforce from areas beyond constituency and council area boundaries.”Economy Minister Gordon Lyons said the total financial assistance the figures detailed related to the amount of support Invest NI offered towards a project.“In addition to this local support offered direct to businesses, over the same period an additional £51m was offered to external delivery organisations or universities, towards projects or initiatives that will benefit businesses across the whole of Northern Ireland or to businesses that cannot be allocated at this level,” he said." ,"isAccessibleForFree": "True" }
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