Province named as European Entrepreneurial Region

Brussels - Belgium - June  25th, 2014 - Committee of the Regions - 107th Plenary - Press Conference EER

© Committee of the Regions / Tim De Backer Northern Ireland has jointly won a competition to become a European Entrepreneurial Region in 2015.

The contest is organised by the EU’s Committee of the Regions, which includes representatives from local and regional government. It identifies and rewards regions which show an outstanding and innovative entrepreneurial policy. The 2015 award will be shared with Lisbon and Valencia.

Committee of the Regions President Ramón Luis Valcárcel said that Northern Ireland’s approach to entrepreneurship is “a perfect example of decentralised growth strategy, demonstrating how best to take a bottom-up approach [and] placing municipalities at its centre.”

The award was accepted by Northern Ireland Local Government Association President Arnold Hatch. “Northern Ireland’s entrepreneurs will sustain our economies,” he commented, “whether these are film-makers, artisan bakers, micro-brewers, bus and coach manufacturers, or medical technology specialists. If we give them support, Northern Ireland has a bright future with jobs, growth and prosperity replacing conflict.”

This status will help to raise Northern Ireland’s profile among European policy-makers and business leaders over the next year. A detailed work plan will be drawn up over the coming months. The Committee of the Regions will expect to see specific targets to improve entrepreneurship and more co-operation with other regions.

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