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Press Release about the Chancellor's proposed funding package for the Northern Ireland Executive (NIE), (1 November 2006)

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Text: HM Treasury ... Page compiled: Martin Melaugh

Press Release about the Chancellor's proposed funding package for the Northern Ireland Executive (NIE), (1 November 2006)


Chancellor sets out St Andrews agreement funding package for Northern Ireland

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown MP, and Peter Hain, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, today met leading members of the Northern Ireland parties to discuss the future economic progress of Northern Ireland. The meeting follows the commitment given by the British and Irish Governments in the St Andrews Agreement.

The Chancellor set out a funding package for the Northern Ireland Executive (NIE) worth £50 billion over the next ten years that could follow a final agreement.  As part of the package, and in advance of the conclusion of the Comprehensive Spending Review, the Government would commit to at least £35 billion of funding for the NIE over the next four years. This would provide the incoming Northern Ireland Executive with certainty to plan public service delivery. To meet the long-term challenges faced by Northern Ireland, the Government would further support an updated £18 billion capital investment strategy to 2017.


Notes for editors

1. The Chancellor told the meeting that if a devolved administration returns, the Government would be prepared to agree, with the incoming Northern Ireland Executive, a long term funding package.

2. The Government is prepared to offer this funding package in order to support the vision that the Government shares with the parties for Northern Ireland to create a world class, high skilled, modern and dynamic economy.

3. The details of the package are as follows:

  • a four-year spending commitment rising in successive stages from £8 billion per year today to £9.2 billion per year in 2010-2011. This commitment totals £35 billion, including capital spending and is equivalent to over £50,000 per household; 
  • an updated strategic capital investment plan totalling £18 billion over the period 2005 to 2017 to underpin long term economic growth, and facilitate substantial capital spending on roads, health, schools, tertiary education and other priorities;
  • if devolution is restored the Government will work with the science councils to provide a long-term basis for research facilities in Northern Ireland.  An incoming Executive would therefore have the opportunity to promote world-class universities and research and development facilities in Northern Ireland with its own resources. To support R&D in business, the UK Government will work with the NIE to simplify the R&D tax credit rules and more actively promote take up of the R&D tax credit in Northern Ireland;
  • allowing the NIE flexibility to drawdown a further £0.4 billion under the End Year Flexibility (EYF) scheme over this period;
  • allowing the NIE to retain the receipts from planned public sector asset sales. These are estimated at over £1 billion between 2007-08 and 2010-11 to boost capital investment;
  • allowing the NIE to retain all efficiency savings identified over the CSR period currently estimated as rising to at least £800 million by 2010-2011 to strengthen front line service delivery. Efficiency savings are from on-going Northern Ireland CSR zero based reviews, plus savings such as improved procurement and transformational change and the Review of Public Administration; and
  • the retention by the NIE of EU receipts for regeneration from the structural funds programme and under PEACE funds for community cooperation. This is additional to the above and estimated at some £0.5 billion in the period 2007-2013.

4. Media enquiries should be addressed to the Treasury Press Office on 020 7270 5238. Non-media enquiries should be addressed to the Treasury’s Correspondence and Enquiry Unit on 020 7270 4558, or by e-mail to

5. This press release and other Treasury publications and information are available on the Treasury website at  If you would like Treasury press releases to be sent to you automatically by e-mail you can subscribe to this service from the press release site on the website.


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