At its meeting on 13th November 2017 the Board of Trustees agreed a proposal that the NIABT be dissolved, with the membership voting to dissolve the Trust at the AGM on 13th December 2017. This decision was agreed in the context that the Northern Ireland Assembly is committed to developing a new programme of work to engage business. At subsequent Board Meetings, Board Members discussed options for the disbursement of NIABT funds and unanimously voted that any decision of how the funds should be disbursed would be put on hold until the political situation is clearer. Given the resumption of the Assembly the Board will meet on 22nd January 2020 to further this discussion.
During this time the Northern Ireland Assembly has been developing its Corporate Plan which contains reference to the establishment of the Northern Ireland Assembly Business Network. Work on its development will continue in tandem with the dissolution of the Trust, ensuring continuity of the relationship between business and the Assembly established by the NIABT.
John McCallister MLA spent the afternoon at Danske Bank headquarters in Belfast to find out the banking sector. During his visit, Mr McCallister was greeted by Kevin Kingston (Deputy CEO) who explained key facts about Danske Bank in Northern Ireland, including their competitive market and business performance.
Mr McCallister then met with John Henning (Head of Agricultural Relations) where he was able to find out more about agriculture and business banking.
Brian Telford (Head of Markets) then spent some time explaining to John how this area of banking operates.
Ambassador of the United States of America to the Court of St James, Matthew W. Barzun, provided the keynote address at the annual President’s Dinner. Local journalist Colletta Smith interviewed the Ambassador on a number of business issues of interest to the special bond between Northern Ireland and America.
On Friday 16th January, Joe McDonald, Corporate Affairs Manager, Asda NI welcomed Pam Cameron MLA, Trevor Clarke MLA, Paul Girvan MLA and Danny Kinahan MLA to the Antrim Asda store.
During the educational visit, the MLAs learned about the work done by Asda with the local community, their support for local businesses and producers and also the development opportunities for Asda staff.
Danny Kennedy MLA, Minister for Regional Development and Trevor Clarke MLA, Chairperson of the Committee for Regional Development briefed the NIABT on plans for the Belfast Rapid Transit system on 14 October 2014. Download the presentation.