The party’s economy spokesperson said: “The establishment of a high street taskforce by the Executive to look at enhancing and improving cities, towns and villages is a very positive initiative.
“Our towns, cities and villages have been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as the number of people using them has been much reduced over recent months. This has been hugely damaging to our local economy.
“Our high streets in cities, towns and villages have also changed over recent years as consumer behaviour has changed, and there is a need to respond to that and to plan for transformation.
“There is work going on involving departments, councils, business organisations and chambers of commerce across the north looking at the issues impacting high streets and their changing use.
“This taskforce will bring together relevant departments and partners to coordinate the work to develop and revitalise cities, towns and villages.
“It is important that we respond to the changing use of our cities, towns and villages and plan for the future, as well as the need to ensure the safety of all those working or visiting town centres as the economy and society reopens and recovers from COVID-19.”