Derry to get jobs boost?

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Invest NI is today set to make an announcement that it has secured “a major new investment project” in Derry, with sources saying this may involve upwards of 300 jobs.

While the details will not be made known by Invest NI until 11am, it’s understood that a significant number of new jobs will be announced by Enterprise Minister, Arlene Foster. There was speculation last night that major communications company EE, formerly Orange, may be behind the investment.

Invest NI has been criticised in the past for failing to attract more jobs to the North West, and Mrs Foster was last week forced to answer questions by MLAs Colum Eastwood (SDLP) and Maeve McLaughlin (Sinn Fein) on why Coleraine - which has secured a new data centre - had been proposed as a pilot Enterprise Zone, and whether Derry had been considered. Mrs Foster said: “The over-riding criteria was that any zone would be likely to attract large capital-intensive projects where ECAs (Enhanced Capital Allowances) would provide an attractive incentive and would outweigh other forms of available financial support. In addition, due to the then legislation cut-off date of April 2017 for projects to benefit from ECAs, any potential project needed to be operational before that date.”