16/12/2009

Minister Supports North West

The recession is hitting the North West hard and its impact continues to worry the NI Employment Minister.

He said this week that he is committed to the local cause and is therefore holding different meetings to help achieve some improvements in the situation.

Sir Reg Empey (pictured) pledged to help the areas hardest hit by the recession in the North West in the first of a series of meetings with local politicians and business leaders from a wide range of NI sectors.

He explained that his Department is providing practical help to local business and also individuals.

He is putting into practice measures to reduce the downturn's impact - measures which he said will also help make the most of the recovery - when it comes.
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The recent meeting involved councillors from Derry City Council, Strabane and Magherafelt District Councils and Limavady and Coleraine Borough Councils.

Also present were MLAs and MPs from Foyle, East Londonderry, Mid Ulster and West Tyrone, as were representatives from the local Chambers of Commerce and Trade.

The Minister said: "It is people and businesses that have borne the brunt of this recession and it is people and businesses that have been the focus of my Department's work."

Mr Empey also asked for feedback on the programmes that are currently on offer because he wanted to make sure that their initiatives are relevant and timely to achieve the most effectiveness from them.

"They will enable us all to create a more prosperous future for our people, for our businesses and for our economy," the Ulster Unionist Minister concluded.



(CL/BMcC)

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