All posts by Chris Taylor

Budget Process has been test for the Assembly and the NI Executive

The increase in VAT, cuts to benefits and the freezing of public service pay were all topics for discussion at today’s Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust Breakfast. Minister for Finance and Personnel, Sammy Wilson was on hand this morning to give members of the Business Trust a run down on the main aspects of the Government’s Spending Review and what it will mean in real terms to the people of Northern Ireland.

As well as the inevitable harsh facts on the cuts to come, the Minister spoke positively about the challenges ahead and the innovative ways revenue could be raised, including the new plastic bags tax which should see a raise in revenue of approximately £4 million.

The event was well attended by over 60 trust members from businesses across the Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust breakfast briefings are held on the second Tuesday of every month. Take a look at the Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust (NIABT) website for more information – niabt.org – or follow them on twitter.com/niabt.

For further information on today’s event, why not listen to our audio boo interviews with the Minister, Chairperson of the NIABT Sean Neeson MLA and Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association (NIIRTA) and Business Trust Member Glyn Roberts.

Listen!

Business Breakfast Highlights Future of Inward Investment

Alastair Hamilton, Chief Executive of Invest NI addresses Business Members and MLAs at today's Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust (NIABT) breakfast briefing
Alastair Hamilton, Chief Executive of Invest NI addresses Business Trust Members

With the current gloomy news on the economy, talk of possible job losses and cutbacks to public services, Invest NI’s Chief Executive, Alastair Hamilton sent out a positive and hopeful message today of significant growth in foreign investment to Northern Ireland and a marked increase in job creation.

Recent good news stories such as the investment by the American Banking conglomerate CITI will see the introduction of 501 new jobs. Alasdair was quick to point out that many new investors are attracted by the positive business environment and the skilled workforce available here.

Today’s briefing saw the Long Gallery packed with successful local business representatives, high profile journalists and MLAs including the Chair of the Assembly’s Enterprise Trade and Investment Committee, Alban Maginness MLA.

Today’s presentation was followed by a lively discussion on issues such as the possibility of greater economic cooperation with Europe and the often thorny and controversial subject of corporation tax.

Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust breakfast briefings are held on the second Tuesday of every month. Take a look at the Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust website for more information – niabt.org – or follow them on Twitter.

Pictured at today's NIABT/Invest NI breakfast briefing are from l-r  Mr. William Wright,  Wright Group Proprietor/ Director, Mr. Leslie Cree MLA,  Mr. Alastair Hamilton Chief Executive of Invest NI and Mr. Alban Maginness MLA and Chairperson of the NI Assembly Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment
"Pictured at today's NIABT/Invest NI breakfast briefing are from l-r Mr. William Wright, Wright Group Proprietor/ Director, Mr. Leslie Cree MLA, Mr. Alastair Hamilton Chief Executive of Invest NI and Mr. Alban Maginness MLA and Chairperson of the NI Assembly Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment"
Business guests at today's NIABT/Invest NI Business breakfast briefing"=
"Business guests at today's NIABT/Invest NI Business breakfast briefing"