22/10/2014

Half of Govt Contracts Secured By Small Businesses

More than half of Government contracts in Northern Ireland have been won by small businesses, it has been announced.

The figures were revealed by Finance Minister Simon Hamilton as he spoke to over 650 suppliers at the annual InterTradeIreland (ITI) 'Meet The Buyer' event in Belfast today.

At the event, local businesses had the opportunity to meet a number of public sector buyers, including buyers for central government departments, councils, universities and other public bodies. A 'Business Support Zone' was also organised for enterprises to come and meet representatives from development agencies such as Invest NI and the Strategic Investment Board, and learn about funding opportunities and support available.

Encouraging delegates to meet with public sector buyers from both the north and south of Ireland, the Minister commented: "Government contracts have an annual expenditure in the region of £2.6billion in Northern Ireland.

"Last year more than half of contracts went to businesses with fewer than 50 employees, which shows that opportunities really are available for all sizes of companies in Northern Ireland.

"Winning these public sector contracts helps local businesses grow and sustain jobs across a range of sectors. Expenditure from central Government, Councils, universities and other public bodies helps to boost our regional economy."

(JP/MH)

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