Derry aims for 4,000 tech jobs by 2020 through investment

20 Feb 201256 Views

Up to 4,000 new ICT jobs are hoped to be created for Derry by 2020 following a period of major investment in telecoms and digital projects across the city.

Some stg£80m has been invested in flagship programmes in the city to date, including a connection to the transatlantic data cable through Project Kelvin.

The investment has also gone into the creation of the Intelligent Systems Research Centre at the University of Ulster and the introduction of free Wi-Fi across the city centre.

Derry also became the first city in the UK and Ireland to achieve 100pc fibre-optic broadband connectivity as part of a stg£3.7m project from BT, giving each home and business access to 40Mbps download speeds which will increase up to 80Mbps this year.

A further stg£77m is designated through the Growing the Digital Economy strategy to help attract foreign direct investment (FDI) and support local business development. Derry will also become the first UK City of Culture next year.

“The simple fact is that Derry has the fastest and most reliable connectivity options for organisations that depend on accelerated data transfer,” said Sharon O’Connor, Derry City Council chief executive.

“Firms that want to be located in a globally-connected digital environment, such as FirstSource and Singularity, have established market advantages by capitalising on Derry’s unique offering. The option to build and expand international operations while reducing the costs is attractive for large businesses.

“Derry’s high-capacity connections and direct pathway to North America and mainland Europe are up to 20pc lower than comparable locations such as Dublin, Glasgow, Manchester and Amsterdam.”

“Derry is primed to be the leading city in the UK and Ireland’s for ICT innovation and digital innovation for the next decade,” she said.

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