LEDCOM calls for A8 economic corridor

LEDCOM Chair Henry Fletcher (right) and Chief Executive Ken Nelson are calling on central and local government and the private sector to join together to create a business corridor along the upgraded A8 dual carriageway.  INLT-53-700-con

LEDCOM Chair Henry Fletcher (right) and Chief Executive Ken Nelson are calling on central and local government and the private sector to join together to create a business corridor along the upgraded A8 dual carriageway. INLT-53-700-con

LEDCOM is calling for the creation of a business corridor along the upgraded A8 dual carriageway to attract jobs and boost the economy.

The move, which would involve a partnership between central and local government and the private sector, was proposed by LEDCOM Chair Henry Fletcher.

Mr Fletcher believes that capitalising on the £133million A8 upgrade could turn the local area into an economic hotspot, attracting innovative businesses with growth potential and making East Antrim “one of the most enterprising areas in Northern Ireland.”

“LEDCOM believes the excellent new road network with its easy access to Belfast makes this area one of the most attractive business locations in Northern Ireland with so much scope for economic growth,” he stated.

“We are calling for a collaborative approach between LEDCOM, local and central government and Invest NI to create the business environment to attract innovative, high tech companies to set up in the area.”

LEDCOM has been working to attract innovative and export-focused companies to its Willowbank Business Park facility.

During 2015/2016, the company was involved with initiatives and services which supported 1350 people, helping to create 300 new jobs and 57 new businesses and social enterprises through programmes in the Mid and East Antrim and Antrim and Newtownabbey council areas.

Mr Fletcher added: “We are continuing to grow our business services and are working on developments that will increase opportunities for entrepreneurs. We believe that with a multi-agency partnership approach we can help create high quality jobs in this region.

“2015/16 has been a successful year in terms of stimulating growth and new jobs but it is important not to be complacent.

“We believe our vision for the future can help make this area one of the most enterprising in the whole of Northern Ireland.”