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Sir David Varney launches call for evidence to inform his further review of the Northern Ireland economy

Sir David Varney launches call for evidence to inform his further review of the Northern Ireland economy

HM TREASURY News Release (HM TREASURY ON BEHALF OF VARNEY REVIEW) issued by The Government News Network on 29 January 2008

VARNEY REVIEW of the COMPETITIVENESS of NORTHERN IRELAND

Following the publication of Sir David Varney's Review of tax policy in Northern Ireland on 17 December, Sir David has been asked by the Chancellor to conduct a further review of the Northern Ireland economy, building on his recent work and focusing on identifying measures to promote private sector investment and enhance competitiveness in Northern Ireland.

The Terms of Reference of this review are:

"Building on Sir David's earlier analysis and agreement from all parties about the unique circumstances of Northern Ireland (in relation to the opportunities provided by the peace process, the need to strengthen the private sector, to create increased employment opportunities and to reform the public sector) this review will explore in more detail how to expand the private sector and to enhance Northern Ireland's competitiveness. In this context, the review will look at incentives for supporting the sustainable growth of businesses, investment and employment in Northern Ireland and the implications for reducing the historic dependency on the public sector. This will include examination of incentives for growth in Northern Ireland that fall within the responsibility of the Northern Ireland Executive and the UK Government"

As part of the review, Sir David will be seeking views from as many stakeholders as possible, in Northern Ireland, Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland. The review team is looking for evidence on the particular challenges and opportunities for the Northern Ireland economy.

The full review Call for Evidence can be accessed at http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/northernirelandcompetitivenessreview

Sir David will aim to report in good time for the US Investment Conference, which is likely to take place in early May. In order to support such a timetable, the Call for Evidence will therefore last for four weeks and will close on 25 February 2008. Sir David would be grateful for responses as soon as possible, however, to help inform the review's work.

Submissions should be sent to the review team by 25 February 2008. These should be sent, ideally by e-mail, to nireland.competitiveness@hm-treasury.gov.uk or if by post to:

Varney Review of the Compeitiveness of Northern Ireland
Room 1/E1
HM Treasury
1 Horse Guards Road
SW1A 2HQ

NOTES FOR EDITORS

1. On 17 December 2007 Sir David Varney was asked to carry out a review of the Northern Ireland economy, focusing on identifying measures to promote private sector investment and enhance competitiveness in Northern Ireland. This followed his review of Tax Policy in Northern Ireland, which examined the case for a differential rate of corporation tax in Northern Ireland, as well as other business tax issues.

2. Sir David's previous review of Tax Policy was commissioned in March 2007 and published on 17 December 2007. It can be found at the Treasury's website:

* The Varney review

3. Biography of Sir David Varney:

Sir David advises the Prime Minister on public service transformation, chairing the cross- Whitehall service delivery council. He was Chairman of HM Revenue & Customs from its establishment in April 2005 to the end of August 2006, and before that he was Chairman of MM02, the leading mobile telecommunications company, since its creation in May 2001. He was previously Chief Executive Officer of BG Group (formerly British Gas) and he has held a variety of senior roles in Shell. He was also chairman of Business in the Community from 2002 to 2004.

4. Non-media enquiries should be addressed to the Treasury Correspondence and Enquiry Unit on 020 7270 4558, or by e-mail to public.enquiries@hm-treasury.gov.uk.

5. This press release and other Treasury publications and information are available on the Treasury website. If you would like Treasury press releases to be sent to you automatically by e-mail you can subscribe to this service from the press release site on the website.

Sir David Varney,
Room 1/E1, HM Treasury,
1 Horse Guards Road,
London SW1A 2HQ

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