Council-led US investment visit highlights opportunities for international growth

Posted By:
Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council

1st Feb 2024

Armagh City, Banbridge, and Craigavon Borough Council hosted Mr. Joe Kennedy III, US Special Investment Envoy to Northern Ireland, and James Applegate, US Consul General Belfast to The Palace, Armagh today (Wednesday, 31 January). The Council organised an investment showcase event to highlight the Borough’s growth potential in key sectors and its strength in innovation and creativity in advanced manufacturing.

As part of the visit to The Palace in Armagh, the delegation were welcomed by the Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Alderman Margaret Tinsley, Roger Wilson, Chief Executive, ABC Council, elected members and civic leaders. The hosts delivered a comprehensive presentation that offered valuable insights and future prospects of the borough.

Following official proceedings, the delegation viewed paintings and artwork from internationally renowned JB Vallely and Palace Artist in Residence, showcasing the distinct cultural elements of life in the borough.

The delegation took time to meet local artisan food and drink producers from the borough’s renowned Food Heartland brand – recognised for its exceptional food quality, prestigious accolades and enhancing its international reputation as a premier food destination in Northern Ireland.

They also had the opportunity to network with local businesses, representatives from the borough’s urban centres, heritage organisations and young people from local schools and higher education.

Speaking at the Palace during the first part of his borough-wide visit Mr. Joe Kennedy III, US Special Investment Envoy to Northern Ireland said:

“I would like to express my gratitude for an amazing morning, the reception has been nothing but extraordinary. The warmth of everyone, the incredible local food producers and of course the Home of St Patrick.

“What you all have built in Armagh is something to be incredible proud of and I’m grateful to get a chance to meet you all and hear more about what makes Armagh unique. You take pride in your home, what your investing in, your rich heritage and I will help share your story with those in America and beyond.”

The visit continued with an engagement event hosted by The Deluxe Group in Portadown, and the opportunity to meet business leaders from Thompson Aero Seating, Hyster-Yale, and Ulster Carpets. Each company highlighted their progressive and innovative contributions to global business markets, their international reputation for quality products, and export expertise.

Commenting on her time spent with the US delegation, Alderman Margaret Tinsley, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, said:

“It was a privilege to host Joe Kennedy III, US Special Investment Envoy and James Applegate US Consul General. Their borough-wide visit provided a unique opportunity to showcase our thriving entrepreneurial community, featuring dynamic and innovative local businesses. It also highlighted our borough’s cultural and historic importance and the wide array of international partnerships that exist. This event served as a platform to attract support and future investment from a prestigious international audience.”

The visit concluded at the Game of Thrones Studio Tour the filming location of Linen Mill Studio in Banbridge, where the delegation had lunch with political representatives and took a tour of the only Game of Thrones Studio Tour in the world and largest indoor visitor attraction on the island.