Belfast Telegraph

Mervyn Storey confirmed as new Stormont Finance Minister

Lord Morrow will be the DSD minister

Northern Ireland's newly appointed First Minister Arlene Foster has confirmed Mervyn Storey is to take on the role of Stormont's Finance Minister.

Mrs Foster vacates the role to lead the Executive.

She was appointed yesterday as First Minister and became leader of the DUP last month.

On Tuesday afternoon Mrs Foster announced Mervyn Storey would take over as Finance Minister and his current role as Social Development minister will be filled by Lord Morrow.

This is Mr Storey's third term as an assembly member for North Antrim.

The former Ballymoney councillor served as chairman of Stormont's education committee until he was appointed to the Executive in September 2014.

The Northern Ireland Assembly will break up in March to allow an election campaign to begin.

Mrs Foster said her priority ahead of May's Assembly election was to ensure minimal disruption to public services.

"We will have continuity of service and that's what people want to see, they don't want disruption in relation to public services, they want to see us continue to deliver and we will do that right up to election day."

Mr Storey said he did not under estimate the challenges ahead.

"This year begins for Northern Ireland with a considerable degree of hope, we need to see the implementation of the budget, challenging as all that will be, to give to the economy and the financial structures of Northern Ireland that stability that they need."

Lord Morrow served as social development minister over a decade ago.

He said: "I will apply myself with all my might to continue in the good work Mervyn has been doing in the weeks ahead."

Before any official announced had been made CBI Northern Ireland had issued a statement congratulating Mr Storey.

CBI Northern Ireland Director, Nigel Smyth, said: “CBI Northern Ireland would like to congratulate Mervyn on his appointment as Minister of Finance and Personnel. While there are only a few months until the forthcoming election, the new minister must manage a number of key issues of vital importance to the business community.”

“In particular, CBI members are particularly keen to see progression on the development of a strategy to maximise the benefits of a lower Corporation tax – which has the potential to generate at least 30,000 additional jobs over the next 15 years.”

“The business community will also look to the new minister to play a positive role in in preparing a new Programme for Government that is ambitious, strategic and outcome focused; maintain the momentum of public sector reform, and; deliver a pro-business reform of business rates.”


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