NWRA publishes development priorities to accelerate growth

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Study says Ireland’s Northern & Western region needs a policy of ‘positive discrimination’ across numerous areas to address the growing deficit.
29 January 2020 - ERNACT  project
Northern and Western Regional Assembly (NWRA) today published a new study and integrated set of development priorities, ‘A Region in Transition: The Way Forward’. It highlights the need for a policy of ‘positive discrimination’ to accelerate growth in the North, West and Border communities of Ireland.

Growing the region
The NWRA, which administers major EU funding programmes in eight counties in the region, proposes a series of recommendations to revitalise the economic well-being of the region and strongly suggesting that the series need to be implemented in an integrated manner (particularly with respect to areas such as Third Level education, research & development and digital infrastructure).

The study also emphasises the level of "investment inequality" in a number of key areas (e.g., digital infrastructure, health, education and transport) - consequently, a ‘two-speed economy’ has developed in Ireland.

Director of the NWRA 
David Minton states that, “Gaps in output tend to be accompanied by high levels of unemployment, low levels of disposable income and prolonged population shifts. Development will continue to shift towards Dublin, which is not sustainable. Ireland needs its regions performing”.

According to NWRA, the region demonstrates sophisticated local economies specialising in biotechnology, medical technology, precision engineering and AI. This provides an enormous opportunity to enhance the region’s position as an alternative to Dublin - with career opportunities, affordable housing and a cheaper cost of living.

Commenting on the report, Colm Mc Colgan, ERNACT General Manger, stated: “I particularly welcome the development priorities related to investments in Research in our 3rd level sector, National Broadband Plan and Cluster Development set out in the Growing the Region section of the report. Rapid implementation of these priorities can go a long way to provide the platform necessary to improve the innovation ranking of the region at European level and make a reality of our vision of a Connected Region

Click here to email  Ianire Renobales at ERNACT for further information

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