McCann meets….Simon Hamilton MLA #dup13

In the second part of my series of interviews with DUP ministers I bring you Simon Hamilton MLA. The youngest of all the DUP ministers he has impressed a number of people with his solid performance in the Department of Finance.

On a personal level I found him very impressive and well briefed on the finance file. He opted for an Ed Miliband speaking without notes speech at the DUP conference which seemed to go down well.

The interview is only a few minutes long but we spoke about more powers to Stormont, economic growth and North-South relations. Here are some select quotes;

On NI21’s proposal to devolve income tax powers;

I take a view that devolving tax powers is something that we will look at carefully so long as it brings benefits to Northern Ireland. So it’s not just a matter of devolving a tax per say it’s about making sure that it produces particularly an economic benefit for Northern Ireland.

On viewing corporation tax as a silver bullet for the economy

It’s only part of your overall offering if you look at what Northern Ireland has been able to do over the last couple of years we have been able to attract in blue chip companies like NYSE, Citibank and others because of the skills that we have, the infrastructure that we have developed, because of the telecoms system that we have invested in. So having low taxation in and of itself isn’t enough.

On his relationship with the Irish government

It’s incredibly important, we both have very different jobs to do, we face similar challenges as well…I’ve met Michael (Noonan) now a couple of times, I’ve met Brendan Howlin who has a lot of public expenditure responsibilities in the South too. We swap notes, we share ideas, we look at the issues that we are both facing and see whether there are common approaches we can take.

 

Full audio available here;

 

McCann meets…..Simon Hamilton MLA by Ontherecord98fm on Mixcloud

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  • Charles_Gould

    David
    Do you see leadership potential here? If Robinson goes for another few years do you think Simon might be the next leader?

  • David McCann

    Charles,

    At some point yes I think he will go for it. Perhaps he needs to throw his hat in the ring when Robinson goes to set down a marker.

  • Leader after next. If he can do well in Finance, the only way is up.