Belfast Telegraph

Karen Bradley approves £350m city deal for Belfast with Londonderry set to follow

Secretary of State Karen Bradley
Secretary of State Karen Bradley

Secretary of State Karen Bradley has given the go-ahead for a £350m city deal for Belfast and announced she was continuing to work on a deal for Londonderry.

Mrs Bradley signed the Heads of Terms for the deal alongside the Belfast City Regional Deal partners and the Northern Ireland Civil Service on Tuesday.

The deal will see the UK Government invest £350 million into the Belfast region over the next 15 years. It is proposed that this figure will be matched by the Northern Ireland Executive once the devolved institutions are restored.

The city deal will be further bolstered by co-investment of upwards of £150m from Belfast Region City Deal partners and investment by the private sector is anticipated to bring the total investment package to over £1 billion.

It is hoped the deal will see the delivery of more than 20 projects to help create up to 20,000 new jobs.

The programme is intended to help grow the region’s business strengths in life and health sciences; ICT, digital and creative industries, and advanced manufacturing.

It will also support digital development and tourism-led regeneration across the entire region, through infrastructure developments and investment in skills to connect people to jobs and services.

Mrs Bradley said she was delighted to get the deal over the line.

"I am also engaging closely with the Chancellor to secure a financial announcement for the Derry-Londonderry Region City Deal and help unlock the huge potential that Derry-Londonderry has to offer," the Secretary of State said. 

"The UK Government is committed to developing a comprehensive and ambitious set of City Deals across Northern Ireland and delivering a stronger economy that works for everyone."

Lord Mayor of Belfast Deidre Hargey said the signing of the deal marked a "significant milestone in our journey towards substantial investment in inclusive regional regeneration".

"It’s testament to the power of collaboration and partnership and we look forward to progressing plans with our wide range of partners, including our colleagues working to deliver a programme of investment for Derry-Londonderry and the North West region," the Sinn Fein councillor said.

"This is an investment which will improve quality of life for people living here and further enhance our attractiveness as a destination of choice for investors, visitors, new residents and students alike."

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