SDLP Chair of Mid Ulster Council, Councillor Martin Kearney, has welcomed confirmation of growth deal funding from the UK government.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson launched a new growth deal for the Mid, South and West Region of Northern Ireland on a visit to Scotland on Monday, as part of a package of funding for parts of Scotland and Wales to help local communities and “ensure no corner of the United Kingdom is left behind.”
The growth deal funding will total £300 million across the three regions, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The move follows a unique collaboration by Mid Ulster Council with Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon and Fermanagh and Omagh District Council Councils last year to develop a growth deal proposition for the area in a letter to the then Chancellor Philip Hammond.
They have pledged to work together to develop a strategic economic plan focused on improving productivity; creating more and better jobs; addressing economic infrastructure; growing investment; supporting business innovation and improving skills.
Prime Minister Johnston said: “As I said when I stood on the steps of Downing Street last week, it is time that we unleashed the productive power not just of London and the South East but of every corner of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Important projects like government’s Growth Deals – backed with £300m new funding – will open up opportunities across our Union so people in every corner of the United Kingdom can realise their potential.”
“We welcome confirmation of funding for this region’s growth deal, which represents the most significant and transformative economic opportunity in generations. We look forward to collaborating with the other councils to progress our early stage work quickly,” said Cllr Kearney.