07/06/2012

Dodds Launches Funding Directory For Businesses

DUP MEP Diane Dodds has launched a new funding directory for Northern Ireland businesses, comprising almost 40 EU funding streams currently open to local industry. The directory was launched at Titanic Belfast with guest speakers including First Minister Rt. Hon Peter Robinson, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster and the Chief Executive of Invest NI Alastair Hamilton.

Speaking at the launch, Diane Dodds said: "The European Union has a large portfolio of funding programmes that may not be well-known within the Northern Ireland business community. Hence, I have launched a Directory of Funding for businesses containing 38 funding programmes as well as 4 key support initiatives on obtaining financial support.

"I am indebted to the many funding agencies in the European Union, Northern Ireland Government Departments and intermediary organisations that have assisted me in producing the Directory. They have provided valuable information and signposted me to businesses in Northern Ireland who have accessed such funds.

"The Directory provides a reference point listing the different sources of funding businesses can apply for. It is not is not a complete list but is a snapshot of current opportunities. It starts out with a practical section on how to get started on with European funding with key websites and contact organisations. The programmes are divided into sub-headings for easy reference and is also a short section on four sources of financial support.

"Each fund is described under the key headings of main aim of fund, size of funding programme, grant schemes available, contact telephone and website. Where possible, a short case study is included of a business in Northern Ireland that has benefitted from the funding.

"We put huge sums of money into Europe every year and my goal as MEP is to see as much of that money returned to Northern Ireland as possible. This, along with my directory of funds for the community and not-for-profit organisations, is aimed at increasing awareness of what is available from the EU in relation to funding and my office remains at the service of the community in helping to access these funds."

(CD/GK)

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