IMPROVING competitiveness through a focus on export-led economic growth is the key to increasing employment and prosperity, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster told business leaders last night.
Addressing guests at the NI Chamber of Commerce President’s Banquet, Mrs Foster said she wanted to see more businesses look beyond traditional markets to global activity.
“Too many of our exporters have historically relied on near markets such as the Republic of Ireland or Great Britain,” she said.
“Whilst these are important, we need to extend our reach and take advantage of the many opportunities that exist across the globe.
Fresh from the most recent INvest NI trade mission to China, she referred to other recent visits, she said companies were already showing the opportunities that exist.
“There are already many success stories for local companies from these emerging markets and we must continue to build on these by innovating and bringing new products to the global market.”
On corporation tax, the Minister repeated her belief that a reduction would provide a major stimulus to the local economy.
“The Prime Minister now has the report and, in light of the continued challenges faced by the local business community, it is essential that the Government makes its decision as soon as possible.”