Mon 19th Jan 2015
NI Chamber welcomes final Executive 2015/16 budget
Commenting on the Executive’s final 2015/16 Budget, Ann McGregor, Chief Executive of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber), said:
“NI Chamber welcomes the Executive’s finalised Budget and in particular the allocation of greater funds to the Department for Employment and Learning (DEL).
“It is vitally important that DEL has sufficient budget to support the development of STEM programmes and retain the Assured Skills programme which engages the FE sector to bridge the skills gaps in priority sectors such as IT, advanced engineering and financial services.
“Under the original proposals, Higher Education institutions faced cuts of around 11% and potentially 1,100 fewer undergraduate places would be available at the universities next year as a result.
“The additional funding allocated to DEL is therefore a welcomed amendment to the budget, especially with the expected change to Northern Ireland’s corporation tax regime which will change the employment market within Northern Ireland, with a need for more skilled staff to fill higher paid jobs.”