Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Fresh US investment expected after Bush visit

US President George Bush with a plant he bought from pupils at Lough View Intergrated Primary School in Belfast, on a visit to Northern Ireland yesterday

The US President jetted out of Northern Ireland last night, leaving the prospect of more jobs and investment in the province in his wake.

And during his whirlwind one-day visit to Belfast George W Bush praised Northern Ireland's peace process as a success story that should inspire the world.

Mr Bush held talks at Stormont with First Minister Peter Robinson and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, and invited the Northern Ireland leaders to visit the White House before his term ends in six months.

The President also continued his backing for Northern Ireland business and said: "This is a good place for investment. Ultimately investment will help Northern Ireland reach its full potential."

Earlier, Prime Minister Gordon Brown let slip that dozens of new jobs would be coming to the province. Although an announcement of 100 new jobs in the financial services sector is expected soon, Mr Brown jumped the gun by saying it would happen yesterday.

The President's visit prompted protests by anti-war groups. But tight security meant the Stormont Castle venue, where yesterday's talks took place, was well out of reach of demonstrators.

Mr Bush began with a private meeting with Mr Robinson and Mr McGuinness, before wider talks involving Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Taoiseach Brian Cowen.

The visit capped a week-long tour of Europe for the US President.

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