In Belfast to discuss trade and investments
It was great to be back in Belfast and a lot has happened since I was here last. The first thing I noted when landing was of course IKEA. Driving through the city centre I quickly detected a large H&M store. Stena Line has been active in Belfast Port for many years and runs ferries between Northern Ireland and England as well as between Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Earlier this year the Swedish engineering firm Sandvik Construction significantly expanded its operations in Northern Ireland. The Swedish marine energy technology company Minesto has developed the power plant Deep Green which is now producing electricity in the waters off Northern Ireland. The power plant works cost-effectively in low velocity tidal and ocean currents. In other words there are some significant Swedish investments in Northern Ireland.
During my visit I had a chance to meet with the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Cllr Nichola Mallon in Belfast City Hall as well as with the First Minister Rt Hon Peter Robinson and Junior Minister Jennifer McCann in Stormont Castle. In addition I met with the Deputy Speaker Mitchel McLaughlin and had a roundtable discussion with a number of parliamentarians.
During my visit I had the opportunity to discuss Trade and Investments with Invest Northern Ireland. I promised to return with a Swedish trade delegation next spring or early autumn. I brought this up with the Swedish business community the day after and the response was overwhelmingly positive.