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Employment: County Antrim

Volume 686: debated on Tuesday 7 November 2006

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What proposals they have to bring employment to the Kells area of County Antrim.[HL8076]

At a local level, Invest NI, through its regional office network, works closely with clients and other stakeholders to encourage entrepreneurship through supporting new business starts and assisting the development and expansion of existing firms. Coupled with its support for innovation and capability development, this approach is intended to facilitate the provision of sustainable employment opportunities throughout Northern Ireland.

The urban regeneration and community development group within the Department for Social Development utilises a number of different policies and regeneration tools to tackle disadvantage and deprivation and consequently promote economic regeneration and employment opportunities.

The department's comprehensive development schemes and urban development grants unlock development opportunities by releasing underused or derelict land and buildings to encourage economic and physical regeneration and promote job creation, inward investment and environmental improvement.

In addition, the department launched the neighbourhood renewal strategy in 2003, aimed at tackling deprivation in the top 10 per cent most deprived areas in Northern Ireland. The strategy has four key strands, one of which is economic renewal. The department aims to encourage business development in these areas and to make sure that people from these areas have the skills they need to participate in the labour market.

The Department for Employment and Learning will support employers who are expanding their workforce or creating new jobs by providing job brokering services and suitable training programmes where appropriate.

The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development delivers the rural development programme 2000-06, which aims to create 1,000 jobs in rural areas in Northern Ireland.