UK Government signs agreement for £250m investment in the North West
24 February 2021
Secretary of State Brandon Lewis, alongside Northern Ireland Executive ministers, and local partners, will sign the Heads of Terms for the Derry/Londonderry and Strabane City Deal later today (Wednesday 24 February).
Signing the Heads of Terms on the Derry/Londonderry and Strabane City Deal is an important milestone towards the completion of this major investment package for the North West.
This Deal will boost the economic potential of the region and support a more prosperous, united community and stronger society. The UK Government’s investment in digital and innovative projects will deliver a step change in the North West’s economy, spread opportunity and empower the North West to become an engine for growth.
The UK Government is investing £105m in capital over 15 years through this economic package. This investment has secured match funding from the Northern Ireland Executive which, supplemented by up to £40m in private sector and local council contributions, provides a total investment for the region of up to £250m.
The UK Government’s investment will support the new Graduate Entry Medical School at Magee as well as a suite of projects that leverage the North West’s existing advantages in digital communications and reflect priorities identified in the UK’s Industrial Strategy on artificial intelligence, data and the future of healthcare.
Northern Ireland Secretary, Brandon Lewis MP said:
“I am absolutely delighted to sign the Heads of Terms for the Derry/Londonderry and Strabane City Deal. The UK Government has committed £105 million of capital funding to support and encourage economic development across the region, creating jobs, boosting opportunity and encouraging further inward investment.
“Today’s announcement is part of the UK Government’s commitment to developing and delivering a comprehensive and ambitious set of City Deals across Northern Ireland and delivering a stronger economy that works for everyone.”
It is hoped the investment package will see the delivery of ten major projects, with a focus on Innovation, Digital and Health projects alongside Renewal and Regeneration initiatives. The proposed projects have the potential to deliver an additional 7,000 jobs, increase GVA by £210m per annum, drive growth in output and wages and provide a population boost as further people are attracted to come to the City region to work and study.
Speaking on behalf of the City Deal partners, the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr Brian Tierney, said:
“The signing of the Heads of Terms marks the single largest investment by the Government to our region and is a significant step forward in our City Deal journey. A funding package of this scale and magnitude will be felt not only in the Derry City and Strabane District Council area, but across the wider North West region and beyond, and will deliver a stronger, more resilient and regionally balanced economy.”
Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government, Luke Hall MP said:
“This is a transformative Deal for the Derry/Londonderry City and Strabane region and provides an opportunity to deliver real change for people in Northern Ireland. This Deal will bolster innovation, productivity and prosperity across the region, and provide business and communities with the opportunities they need to thrive”
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Click [URL: Heads of Terms Document with Signatures] (PDF, 1.02MB, 10 pages) for the full Heads of Terms document which sets out further details of the projects being proposed. All projects will be subject to the approval of final business cases.
Alongside Ulster University, Western Health and Social Care Trust, Clinical Translational Research and Innovation Centre (C-TRIC) and the North West Regional College, the Deal delivers a truly collaborative investment programme which will help to drive economic development across the region, boosting jobs, creating opportunity and encouraging further inward investment.
Some of the 10 proposed projects include:
· Centre for Industrial Digitisation, Robotics and Automation (CIDRA)
This will support industry and commerce in their adoption and exploitation of industrial digital technologies, robotics and automation promoting innovation and accelerating new applications in the service sectors.
· The Cognitive Analytics Research Laboratory (CARL)
This is a transformational new cutting-edge Applied Research Centre that brings together data analytics and Artificial Intelligence expertise which are key technologies for future innovation.
· The Transformation Healthcare Research Innovation Value Based Ecosystem
Building on the existing C-TRIC, this is a research-led, community and industry-facing facility developed in recognition of the global opportunities that exist in the area of personalised and genomics medicine.