Stormont calls for improved finance for businesses

Stormont's Finance Committee is calling for improved access to finance for businesses in its regular meetings with the British Bankers' Association and representatives of the four largest banks in Northern Ireland.

The meetings have been held to evaluate the impact of the global economic situation on business in Northern Ireland, and bankers have been urged to be at the fore-front of an economic recovery in the region by improving their assistance to businesses requiring access to finance.

Sammy Wilson, the Stormont Finance Minister, reiterated that the banks had a key role to play in the road to recovery for Northern Ireland business, in a speech at the 'Better Business Finance' event. Speaking to representatives of the banking sector and of the Northern Ireland business community, he said improved access to credit for businesses fighting to make progress in the midst of the current economic situation was "critical".

Stormont further outlined its efforts to boost the Northern Ireland economy in its Programme for Government (PfG) which it published last week. The document sets out 76 pledges and includes a target of 25,000 new jobs and the creation of £50million loan fund to assist businesses which do not meet bank lending criteria. The document also confirms the abolishment of air passenger duty on long-haul flights from Belfast and vows to continue efforts to get power of over corporation tax devolved to Stormont.

If you are a business owner or manager in Northern Ireland requiring legal advice on any aspect of commercial law, contact Wilson Nesbitt solicitors in Belfast or Bangor by email at .