£75m for Magee expansion proposed over 2022-25 Budget period

Finance Minister Conor Murphy has outlined funding plans to help Ulster University achieve its goal of increasing the number of students at Magee college to 6,000 within the forthcoming budget period while reiterating the Executive's commitment of 10,000 Derry students.

Tuesday, 14th December 2021, 10:11 am
Updated Tuesday, 14th December 2021, 10:12 am
Magee College

Mr. Murphy told MLAs £75 in funding was programmed to be spent at the Derry third level institution over the 2022-25 budget period.

He outlined the planned expenditure in a statement on the Executive's first multi-annual budget.

"Some additional funding has been confirmed by the Secretary of State from the confidence-and-supply and New Decade, New Approach (NDNA) financial packages. That includes £75 million for the medical school at Magee.

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"The profile for the medical school is not aligned to the anticipated expenditure profile, and discussions will take place with Treasury on ensuring the most appropriate profile going forward.

"However, the draft Budget must reflect the profile as set out by the Secretary of State. At the time of the NDNA agreement, there were just under 4,000 students at Magee. Ulster University has recently indicated that it is actively making changes to increase the numbers to 6,000 over the period covered by the Budget.

"The Executive remain committed to increasing student places to 10,000, as outlined in 'New Decade, New Approach', including providing the necessary funding," he stated.

Mr. Murphy has launched a 12-week consultation on the draft Budget that will run to March 7, 2022.

The budget document points out that the Magee 'funding is held centrally pending agreement with Treasury on precise profiling of the funding in line with the progress on the Medical School build'.

The £75m includes £15m in Capital Departmental Expenditure Limits (DEL) funding in 2022-23, £15m (£5m annually) in Resource DEL funding over the three budget years 2022-25, and a further £45 million in Capital funding from the Derry City Deal Inclusive Future Fund.

Mr. Murphy's written ministerial statement on the proposed budget explained: "The NDNA also provided up to £15 million Resource DEL for a medical school, at Magee. The profile for the medical school is not necessarily aligned to the spend profile and discussions will take place with Treasury on ensuring the most appropriate profile going forward.

"However the draft Budget must reflect the profile as set out by the Secretary of State. There is also some £45 million of Capital ring-fenced from the Inclusive Future Fund for the Medical School.

"At the time of the NDNA agreement there were just below 4000 students at Magee. Ulster University has recently indicated that the University is actively making changes to increase numbers to 6000. The Executive remains committed to increasing student places to 10,000 as outlined in NDNA, including providing the necessary funding."