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€18 million sales boost for cross-border businesses

Tradelinks 2, an EU-funded cross-border business development programme, has generated just over £15 million new sales for firms in the cross-border region.

The initiative, which was designed to assist and grow the important micro enterprise sector across Northern Ireland and the border counties of Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Leitrim, Sligo and Donegal, held a celebration event on Friday 21st September to mark the end of the programme. The event took place at the Four Seasons Hotel in Monaghan.

Tradelinks 2, which received £2.98million from the European Union’s INTERREG IVA Programme, is a partnership initiative delivered by Enterprise NI (the network of local Enterprise Agencies in Northern Ireland) and the Border County Enterprise Boards in the Republic. It is also supported by both governments, through the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment and the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.

The programme’s principal aim was to assist 550 micro businesses on both sides of the border to identify and address barriers to cross border trade and development – the programme actually supported 580 firms, created over 250 new jobs, and helped secure over 1200 more jobs.

The Tradelinks Programme ran from October 2009 to September 2012 and was available to any micro enterprise in Northern Ireland or the border counties. Through a combination of business mentoring, research and networking the programme was focused on increasing skills, knowledge, access to information, new contacts and new forms of doing business. Particular emphasis was placed in developing cross border trade opportunities and linkages.

The Tradelinks celebration event was manged by i2 Total Marketing on behalf of Tradelinks.


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