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LEDU investigation must lead to new guidelines for INI

13 May, 2004

Sinn Fein Economy Spokesperson, Fermanagh South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew MLA has said that the investigation of financial mismanagement at the LEDU small business agency must lead to new guidelines for INI.

Ms Gildernew said:

"It is significant that the management of financial support, particularly for small businesses and indigenous business start ups was weak in a climate where we have not seen the development of a coherent strategy to develop this vital area of our economy.

"This was public money that should and could have been targeted at delivering real benefits on the ground. Instead it appears that through incompetence and mismanagement that these resources have not had the impact that was intended. We have to ask why and we have to establish whether the people involved in mismanagement at LEDU have now become subsumed into INI.

"This investigation into LEDU must lead to new guidelines for Invest NI on how it monitors its support packages. IT is also important that at the same time we do no see the introduction of a layer of red tape that actually stops small businesses and people wanting to set up new business ventures from accessing the available financial support." ENDS

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