Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster leads trade mission to USA
Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster is leading a trade mission to the West Coast of the USA, bringing some of the biggest Northern Ireland companies from the life sciences sector with her.
The minister begins the four-day visit in Los Angeles, before moving on to San Diego, San Francisco and Chicago to support Northern Ireland companies in their efforts to secure export business and to meet investors.
Arlene Foster said: "Overseas visits are vitally important to our continuing relationships with international investors and trade partners.
"As well as meeting existing investors, I will also hold private meetings with potential investors who are either at an early stage of considering Northern Ireland as a potential location, or are close to finalising their plans.
"We have been told numerous times that potential investors appreciate the direct access to Government that these meetings provide and I am confident that my programme of visits this week will produce good results for Northern Ireland," the minister added.
The minister's itinerary includes leading 13 businesses and organisations from Northern Ireland which are exhibiting at San Diego's BIO International Convention, the biggest life sciences exhibition in the world.
Boris Island could bring 710 new jobs
A new link to a four-runway hub airport in London — the so-called ‘Boris Island’ project — would boost the Northern Ireland economy by £92m per annum by 2050 and deliver 710 new jobs, according to a new report.
The Making Connections report, commissioned by Transport for London, claims that the four-runway hub airport in the Thames estuary would provide 12 flights a day to Belfast.
The document from York Aviation and Oxford Economics claims that rival plans for a third runway at Heathrow would not provide a sustainable benefit for Northern Ireland.
Daniel Moylan, the Mayor of London’s chief adviser on aviation, claimed that Amsterdam airport provides more than three times the number of UK regional connections than Heathrow currently does.
“A third runway at Heathrow will be full within two or three years of opening and just as now, airlines will be forced to concentrate on their most profitable long-haul routes,” he said.
“I hope the Airports Commission studies the report in detail and takes into account the economic needs of the UK as a whole when preparing its final report,” he added.
The Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce last week said it was in favour of a third runway at Heathrow, and quoted an estimate from Oxford Economics that flights between Belfast and Heathrow already support 900 jobs here.
Wastebeater expanding with firm acquisition
A Belfast recycling and waste management firm has acquired the trade and assets of Allclear Environmental for an undisclosed sum.
Wastebeater has transferred seven former Allclear staff from Newry to its Belfast office, bringing the total number of employees to 84. Company clients include the University of Ulster, car dealer Charles Hurst and Belfast City Council.
Managing director Kieran Byrne said that the transaction extended Wastebeater's geographical reach and expanded its customer base.
“This acquisition of Allclear is an exciting development for our company and is part of our ongoing growth strategy,” he said.
“We are building our customer base, our geographical reach across the island of Ireland and Great Britain, and we are increasing our employee numbers.
“We have invested heavily in research and development and I am looking forward to introducing our new customers to our award-winning waste management and recycling solutions.
“Over the last decade we have led the way in Northern Ireland by investing in new technologies and exploring more innovative ways to recycle waste.
“Wastebeater will continue to invest to provide the most cost effective and sustainable waste management and recycling services for all our customers.”
In 2011 Wastebeater was awarded the Sustainable Ireland Recycling Industry Award, for the newly developed materials recovery facility at its Belfast site.