Chancellor George Osborne says the Government is pouring £7m into a regional air connectivity fund to help get a Londonderry to Dublin flight off the ground again.
He made the pledge in his Autumn Statement. There was no mention of a ‘City Deal’ for the North West, however, although plans for these in Glasgow and the Clyde Valley and Cardiff are underway.
Mr Osborne said: “The Government is also providing £7million through the Regional Air Connectivity Fund to support new air routes promoting domestic and international connectivity and stimulating jobs and growth, including from Belfast to Carlisle and from Derry to Dublin.”
He said the amount of money available for infrastructural investment across NI will rise by 12 per cent by 2020/21.
“The government is supporting the Northern Ireland Executive with a substantial package of new funding and financial flexibility,” he said.
“The government confirms up to an additional £500 million spending power for the Northern Ireland Executive to support the full implementation of the Stormont House Agreement, which itself provided the Northern Ireland Executive with new funding and additional flexibility of over £2billion. This includes additional support of £160 million for the Police Service of Northern Ireland. The Spending Review delivers significant real-terms increases to Northern Ireland Executive capital budgets. Funding available for infrastructure investment via the block grant through to 2020/21 will rise by 12 per cent, meaning over £600 million more than if it had been held at 2015/16 levels.”
He also confirmed that if Stormont’s finances are put on a sustainable footing Corporation tax will be reduced to 12.5 per cent in April 2018.