Opinions

Conservative government great for Northern Ireland

The Conservative Party’s General Election victory is great news for the UK as a whole and it’s particularly good news for Northern Ireland.     This part of the country needs drastically to rebalance and modernise the economy, so that we can attract investment and create jobs.  In David Cameron and the Conservatives, we have a majority government at Westminster, committed to that process, which will help in every way it can.

Prioritising skills and I.T. in Northern Ireland's schools and colleges

There was great news for the Northern Ireland economy, earlier this year, when the Secretary of State, Theresa Villiers, published legislation to devolve powers to cut Corporation Tax to the Northern Ireland Assembly.  Conservatives locally spearheaded the campaign for lower business taxes and we believe the bill will encourage inward investment and new jobs.

Budget opportunities not being grasped by lacklustre Executive

The Executive cobbled together a last-minute, crisis budget, but the document doesn’t hide its inability to plan for the long-term or build a successful economy.  Northern Ireland now has some figures to make the books balance, but there has been little thought about how the block grant can best be used to create private sector jobs. 

A single education board - an opportunity

The agreement of the Executive to create a single Education Board to replace the existing five run-down Education and Library Boards is to be welcomed.  Many years before ESA was even considered, many of us were saying that five educational and library boards should be reduced to one. 

We must get competitive to grow the economy

A recent PWC report and figures from the Ulster Bank confirm that Northern Ireland’s economy is still lagging behind the rest of the UK.  One problem which is highlighted again and again is our lack of competitiveness.  Northern Ireland lags well behind the Republic of Ireland and the UK as a whole in this regard.

What the 'Christmas Truce' can teach us

Next year sees the 100th anniversary of the ‘Christmas Truce’.  Over the 24th and 25th of December 2014, British and German troops famously climbed out of their trenches, to play football, exchange gifts and sing carols in ‘no-man’s land’, with men who were considered the enemy. 

Haass submission

NI Conservatives' submission to Richard Haass