The six Belfast city region partner councils welcome Prime Minister Theresa May’s commitment to progressing City Deals in Northern Ireland yesterday in the House of Commons, recognising the need for Northern Ireland to receive an economic boost.
A City Deal for the Belfast region would result in a 10 year investment plan to improve infrastructure, digital connectivity, tourism assets and innovation hubs as well as delivering a major skills programme. The aim of the deal is ultimately to create more and better jobs across all of our growth sectors, pushing the ‘fast-forward’ button on economic growth here and ensuring that those opportunities are accessible across all of our communities.
The partner councils (Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, Ards and North Down Borough Council, Belfast City Council, Lisburn and Castlereagh Borough Council, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council) are working closely with businesses, universities, the civil service departments and further education sectors and locally elected representatives across all parties with a commitment to securing the best deal possible which will deliver significant benefits not only for the region, but for the whole economy of Northern Ireland.
We are currently working up the detail of the projects to present to Westminster in the autumn. We are aware that Derry City and Strabane District Council is also working on a similar deal and are very supportive of other areas in NI coming forward with proposals.