Originally a four year period, the PfG was extended by one year and we were assigned new targets.
With just six months left we are well on track to deliver against our revised targets:
As of September 2015 we have helped promote over 39,000 new jobs across Northern Ireland since 2011.
These new jobs have been in a range of sectors including food, manufacturing, legal, business and financial services, and across every council area. Of the jobs we have helped promote, 60% have been with local companies .
Our support for jobs has helped generate nearly £3bn of investment in the local economy through salaries.
In total, since 2011, we have made over 20,800 offers of support to businesses, 93% of which were to locally owned companies . These offers have translated into over £650m of assistance .
As well as providing support to create new jobs, we also help companies undertake R&D and invest in skills training to improve the efficiency of their business. This support has resulted in significant investment by companies.
Our fifth PfG target relates to the growth of manufacturing exports from Northern Ireland. Despite our best endeavours and some great export successes by Northern Ireland businesses, global economic factors such as the Euro crisis and economic downtown across the world has meant that export growth has been much slower that hoped. For 2015/16 we are aiming for 3% growth on last year’s export outturn of £6.02bn.
Since the start of this PfG period there have been a number of changes including:
These, combined with challenging budget environments, will mean that our targets and outturns will not reach the heights of the previous couple of years. This can be seen in the one year targets set for us as part of the extension to the PfG.
Over the last six months we have announced six new inward investors for Northern Ireland including a customer service centre in Craigavon by Eishtech, that will create up to 320 jobs over the next three years, and an HR Outsourcing Centre in Londonderry by Texan based OneSource Virtual which will create 289 new jobs by 2017.
We have also supported local companies to expand such as McAuley in Ballymoney. As part of a £5m investment McAuley Precision and McAuley Fabrication are undertaking expansions that will cumulatively create 87 new skilled advanced manufacturing jobs in Ballymoney by 2019.
We continue to offer a range of advice and guidance to a wide range of businesses. Businesses access over half a million pages of guidance every month on our information website, nibusinessinfo.co.uk. This free advice channel has helped generate an estimated £2m of saving to local businesses every year .