Northern Ireland builds a more regionally-balanced economy

77% of offers to business and 60% of new jobs created in past year were outside Belfast, Invest NI reports.

As well as a drive to get people into higher quality jobs, Northern Ireland is progressing towards a more regionally-balanced economy says Invest Northern Ireland.

In 2021/2022 the investment agency made just over 2,500 offers to businesses throughout Northern Ireland to the value of £99m, which will contribute to £573m investment in the local economy and almost 3,548 new jobs.

“Not only did we see commitment to grow, right across Northern Ireland, but also a drive to get more people into better jobs”

Invest NI Interim CEO, Mel Chittock commented: “Nearly 1,900 businesses sought our support in 2021/22. Considering the ongoing impact of COVID-19 and wider economic challenges the year brought it was reassuring to see so many businesses still committing to investment, whether through innovation, exporting, skills development or job creation.

“Not only did we see commitment to grow, right across Northern Ireland, but also a drive to get more people into better jobs.”

Agility and pace

2,000 (77%) of the offers made in 20

21/22 were outside of Belfast, supporting the Department for Economy’s objective of a strong regionally-balanced economy.

70% of the 3,400+ new jobs to be created will pay salaries above the NI Private Sector Median and 2,000 (nearly 60%) of the new jobs to be created will be outside Belfast.

Northern Ireland’s attraction to internationally mobile businesses also remained strong, with a further 15 new investors choosing to invest in Northern Ireland for the first time; including ASOS, Workrise and Agio.

Alongside attracting new investors, we also supported reinvestment by local companies such as Newry manufacturer Connex Offsite Limited, Deli Lites in Warrenpoint, Zymplify in Portstewart and Stone Bakery, in Crossmaglen.

“Along with our business support”, added Mel “we also continued to deliver four NI Executive emergency support schemes, our own nine COVID recovery schemes, and delivered a significant element of the NI Executive’s High Street Scheme. The agility and pace at which our team adapted and responded to these new asks is testament to our commitment to doing what is needed to support our economy and businesses.

“Considering the continuing challenges for both NI businesses and Invest NI, the results we are presenting are testament to the resilience of those businesses we have worked with, and our own team’s drive and determination. I am proud of what we have achieved.”

John Kennedy
Award-winning editor John Kennedy is one of Ireland's most experienced business and technology journalists.