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Minister promises Peace fund handouts 'within weeks'

European Peace funds will be delivered within three weeks, Finance Minister Mairtin O Muilleoir said.

Control over expenditure of the money from Europe on projects worth less than £5 million will be decentralised from his Finance Department.

Fourteen projects will benefit immediately from the windfall designed to entrench the Northern Ireland peace process.

The minister said: "My department has conducted a review of the current process across departments and is content that the level of approvals already in place across the programme both at SEUPB level and individual department level provides sufficient control for projects with expenditure less than £5 million.

"I'm committed to helping speed up the process and this action, the first major change since 2008, will shorten the approvals process by an average of three weeks."

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