30/07/2001

Professor to chair Invest Northern Ireland

Professor Fabian Monds has been appointed as the Shadow Chairman of Invest Northern Ireland (INI), the new economic development agency which will come into existence early in 2002.

The appointment was announcement by Sir Reg Empey, Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment, on Monday 30 July.

In addition, the Minister also announced seven members of the Shadow Board who will support the Chairman as final plans for Invest Northern Ireland are drawn up. They include Frank Bunting, Dr Patrick Haren, Gilbert Little, Dr Alan McClure, Bill McGinnis, Derek Shaw and Teresa Townsley.

Responding to his appointment, Professor Monds said: "Invest Northern Ireland starts from a position of strength and will build on the individual track records of the existing agencies to achieve even greater economic success.

"It will be a vibrant, independent organisation, with the resources and influence necessary to make a real difference. It must be capable of reacting quickly to changing conditions in a fiercely competitive international marketplace.

"Northern Ireland needs an economy which is balanced, where equal importance is given to both new and traditional industries and where large and small businesses are give the proper priority.

"Powerful economic benefits will be gained if we can develop an environment in which businesses can flourish.”

To allow him to concentrate on the establishment of Invest Northern Ireland Professor Monds is standing down from the chairmanship of the Industrial Research and Technology Unit.

Professor Monds is Emeritus Professor of Information Systems in the University of Ulster. He is also a founding partner of Medical and Scientific Computer Services Ltd., Lisburn and of WesternConnect Ltd., Londonderry and has contributed to economic development and inward investment initiatives throughout Northern Ireland. (MB)

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