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This weekend, we'll gather for our annual party conference.
As we do so, we'll look back with immense pride
at the many highlights in Northern Ireland since Conference last met.
One highlight has been the opening of this world-class building,
with record visitor numbers from outside the Province.
It has surpassed every target.
Another highlight was Royal Portrush hosting the 2012 Irish Open.
Such was its success,
we're hoping to bring the British Open to County Antrim.
Only a few months ago,
Northern Ireland welcomed Her Majesty The Queen
as part of the Jubilee celebrations.
Seeing Stormont lined with tens of thousands was an unforgettable sight.
We were proud to support Her Majesty's dedicated public service.
In September, we marked the centenary of the Ulster Covenant.
We remembered a previous generation,
who led the foundation for the state of Northern Ireland.
Our forefathers had a vision of a shared society.
It was fitting to mark the centenary at a time
when support for the union has never been greater.
I want to build on that support and make Northern Ireland
the very best part of the United Kingdom
to start a business or raise a family. That's my vision.
We face many challenges, not least the economy.
I know many people are hurting.
Whether in Stormont, Westminster, Brussels or in local government,
all our elected representatives
are working to help hard-pressed households.
We have said no to water charges,
delivered free public transport for the elderly,
and we're keeping rates low.
We're supporting local businesses and we're attracting new companies.
I've just returned from China,
where we were able to help local companies start exporting
into the Chinese market.
Another focus of our conference is helping disadvantaged communities.
As Northern Ireland moves forward, no-one should be left behind.
Through the Social Investment Fund,
the Executive is forming partnerships with local communities.
To succeed will require all of us to work together.
And rather than party-political bickering,
I want to work with the other parties to secure better schools
and hospitals and better services for our people.
I know there's a lot to do, but by working together
we can restore Northern Ireland to its best.
If you're unable to join with us in La Mon this weekend,
I hope you can still support our vision for Northern Ireland.
You can register your support at mydup.com