Belfast Telegraph

Monday 28 July 2014

New online migrant network to help on the home front

A new online scheme has been launched to help people living outside Northern Ireland improve the local economy.

The new not-for-profit virtual organisation, Northern Irish Connections, is aimed at developing the support of people with a connection to the province by birth, family, education or business.

People living outside Northern Ireland are a key audience for organisations focused on fostering the economy here through business, tourism, education or trade.

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said that the "diaspora community" is a key audience.

"By creating this new, not-for-profit organisation to take the strategic lead and determine the best method for interacting with the diaspora community we can ensure that all interactions with this target group are co-ordinated, timely and effective," she said.

"Working closely with central and local government, it will play a key role in the delivery of the Executive's economic strategy.

"One of its key responsibilities will be to develop and maintain a global network of advocates who will be in a position to communicate key strategic messages in their country and sector, facilitating developments in foreign investment, trade, education and tourism in Northern Ireland."

The network will be funded by a subscriptions system, open to public and private organisations.

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk