Northern Ireland

Infrastructure projects worth £2bn stalled

Parliament Buildings at Stormont
Image caption With no ministers in place, civil servants have been making the decisions on running public services

The chair of the Institute of Directors (IoD) in Northern Ireland says that an Executive is needed to drive through £2billion worth of infrastructure projects that are currently stalled.

However, Gordon Milligan told the BBC's Inside Business programme senior civil servants are doing an incredible job in running government departments in the absence of government ministers.

Northern Ireland has been without a functioning devolved government since January 2017.

Mr Milligan told Inside Business: "You are talking about projects like the North-South (electricity) Interconnector, Casement Park (sports ground), the Transport Hub, and the new power station in the Belfast harbour estate.

"We're missing ministers taking those decisions and that is holding the economy back - there's no doubt about that.

"It's holding back growth in the economy, it's holding job creation back."

He added: "I also think the permanent secretaries and the senior civil servants have been doing an incredible job, a very positive job for Northern Ireland in the absence of an Assembly.

"I think increasingly we are missing ministers to take those key decisions."

Inside Business is broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster on Sundays at 1330 BST and on Mondays at 1830 BST.