The Department for the Economy has published its Action Plan in response to the Independent Review of Invest Northern Ireland.
Whilst the Independent Review Panel acknowledged that “Invest NI should remain an Arm’s Length Body” and that the organisation has “strengths to be built upon”, it also concluded that there was “considerable room for improvement”.
To address the challenge set, more than 300 staff from across the Department and Invest NI worked collaboratively to understand the problems highlighted by the Review recommendations, before developing Strategic Actions to resolve them.
The co-designed actions set out in this ambitious Plan will answer the findings and recommendations to successfully deliver the transformative and profound change called for.
Mike Brennan, Permanent Secretary at the Department for the Economy (DfE) said:
“The Independent Review recommendations challenged both the Department and Invest NI to completely reshape how economic policies are developed and implemented going forward, in pursuit of a 10x Economy. Together we have taken the time necessary to get this Action Plan right, ensuring its implementation will not only be impactful, but is aligned with the 10x triple bottom line of innovation, inclusivity, and sustainability.
“Invest NI, like all public bodies, must do more with less in the constrained budgetary landscape, and difficult decisions must be taken to ensure this Plan is implemented. The partnership working demonstrated thus far will continue, with both DfE and Invest NI firmly committed to Action Plan delivery by 2025/2026.”
Colm McKenna, Invest NI’s Interim Chair said:
“This Action Plan is a clear commitment for change by Invest NI and DfE and we understand that its delivery will require changes to our leadership, structure, operations, culture, and strategy.
“We do not underestimate the challenge ahead to ensure we fulfil everything we have committed to. We have already made good progress in the eight months since the publication of the Review and have taken immediate action in several areas while we also carried out the detailed scoping work on the more challenging recommendations. Previously the targets we were given were heavily focused on job creation but starting now, our customer is the wider Northern Ireland economy.
“Our focus will now pivot from supporting job creation to delivery of 10x and City and Growth Deals in order to raise the overall level of productivity in our economy. This includes a commitment to strengthening our regional impact and ensuring Invest NI is equipped to deliver the Department’s 10x policy priorities of innovation, sustainability and inclusivity to ensure we deliver a high-performing Northern Ireland economy.”
A copy of the action plan can be found at Independent Review of Invest Northern Ireland Action Plan - DfE website.
Notes to editors:
- The Departmental response to the Independent Review of Invest NI report was published on 31 March 2023 and can be found at Departmental response to the Independent Review of Invest NI
- A joint DfE/Invest NI Steering Group was established to oversee, direct and challenge Action Plan development.
- Each Strategic Action is underpinned by a detailed delivery plan which locks in the tasks, timelines, risks, and resources necessary to ensure successful Action Plan delivery.
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