Posted on Monday 22 November 2010 byUlster Business
The First Minister and deputy First Minister were joined by Brian McAreavey and Bill Mills from CITI for the announcement
Banking giant Citi has announced plans to create a further 500 jobs at its Titanic Quarter offices in Belfast as part of a major expansion.
The US firm said that over the next five years it would create 440 new high quality roles in its technology and operations divisions and a further 61 new specialist posts in its legal and compliance division.
The expansion, which is expected to generate £16m of new annual salaries, has been backed by support with £8.4m from Invest NI.
Citi is one of the world's largest banking corporations and has been based in Belfast since 2004. The local base now employs over 900 people who service the legal, operational and technology needs of Citi offices and clients around the world.
Bill Mills from the company said: "As a global company with a presence in more than 120 countries, we continually evaluate the best locations for expansion to ensure maximum productivity and growth. Northern Ireland has repeatedly exceeded our expectations since our initial investment in 2004. The support offered by Invest NI, the strong skills base and graduate pool continue to make Northern Ireland an attractive investment location and the perfect fit to support our growth in EMEA."
Coming so soon after the US-NI economic conference at the end of October, First Minister Peter Robinson said the latest commitment by Citi was "proof positive that our ongoing efforts to secure investment are paying dividends".
US economic Envoy to Northern Ireland Declan Kelly told Ulster Business: "It is significant because of the jobs and the type of jobs they are, because it underlines American companies' commitment to Northern Ireland and also because Citi have been such important advocates for what we are trying to do. Bill Mills was front and centre at the conference we held a few weeks ago and he has backed up his words."
He noted that including Citi there had been 750 jobs announced in the last four weeks and more than 1,500 in the last year from US companies attracted by factors such as the skilled graduate workforce.
"Northern Ireland is focusing its attention to the four areas driving the world economy at the moment and has unique attributes that are appealing to people who want to spend their money overseas," said Kelly.
"Believe me when I tell you they won't be the last. There are a number of companies actively engaged in dialogue with us and they are watching developments like today's keenly because companies like Citi don't make decisions like this lightly."