Activities of BT Group worth £690m to Northern Ireland economy in 2021/22 - report

The BT Group's investment in the north included the multi-million-pound refurbishment of Riverside Tower in Belfast.

THE activities of BT helped generate an estimated £690 million for the north’s economy last year, according to a report commissioned by the telecoms giant.

The analysis by consultancy firm Hatch looked at the spend of employees and suppliers of the BT Group - including EE, BT, Plusnet and Openreach – and the estimated knock-on impact on the economy.

It estimated BT Group’s activities supported in the region of 7,340 Northern Ireland jobs in the 2021/22 financial year.

The BT Group itself employs around 3,200 people in the north, making a direct contribution of around £420m in 2021/22.

BT’s £140m spend with Northern Ireland suppliers and their subsequent spending produced the £690m headline figure for the report.

Major investments in the north by BT include the roll-out of full-fibre broadband and the multi-million-pound refurbishment of Riverside Tower in Belfast.

Philip Jansen, chief executive of BT Group, said: “BT Group plays a vital role at the heart of the Northern Ireland economy. We're one of only a handful of companies that serves customers in every corner of the UK.

“We've continued our major investment in building next generation full fibre and mobile connectivity rapidly across the UK.

"We've already reached 9.6 million premises with full-fibre, and our 5G mobile network now reaches 60 per cent of the UK population. The benefits to families and businesses are huge: new jobs, economic growth and innovation, across every nation and region,” he added.

“We’re also transforming BT Group so that we’re fit to power the Northern Ireland economy of the future. Our new state-of-the-art offices, spread across the UK, are a central part of that, bringing colleagues together in brilliant spaces that will enable collaboration and help us to better serve our customers.”