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Sinn Féin meet new InvestNI Chief

28 April, 2009 - by Maeve McLaughlin, Raymond McCartney

Foyle Sinn Féin MLA Martina Anderson is calling on the new Chief Executive of Invest NI to address the agency’s perceivedfailure to help redress regional investment inequalities across the North of Ireland.

Speaking earlier Ms Anderson said:

“Myself and fellow Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney met with the new Chief Executive of Invest NI Alastair Hamilton on Monday,” Ms. Anderson said.

“It was a very open and frank meeting and we firmly put our case regarding what we see as the failure of Invest NI to deliver for areas like Derry.

"The Programme for Government included a commitment, ‘to develop new and innovative measures that will address existing patterns of socio-economic disadvantage and target resources and efforts towards those in greatest objective need’.

"As a public agency, that commitment also applies to Invest NI but we feel they have failed in the delivery of this and foreign direct investment continues to go to already affluent areas.

“We understand that business interests alone will often dictate where an investor locates. However, where that investor is receiving millions of pounds in assistance from the public purse, then Invest NI should, where possible, be imposing conditions which ensure that the areas which need it most also benefit from that investment.

“The new Chief Executive has agreed to look into the issues we raised. I am conscious that he is new in post but I hope that he will take on board what we have said and begin to put in place the new and innovative measures which are required to ensure that areas of disadvantage also benefit from foreign investment.”

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