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The government is expected to warn the EU that it is prepared to override the post-Brexit Northern Ireland Protocol if an agreement cannot be reached on cutting checks on goods travelling from Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Ministers are preparing to outline proposals to parliament for solving the “serious challenges” caused by the Protocol, which is designed to prevent a hard border with Ireland by effectively keeping Northern Ireland in the EU’s single market for goods.
Lord Frost, the former chief negotiator with the EU, is expected to say today that the post-Brexit terms must be radically changed, less than a year on from the new system coming into effect.
The Conservative peer recently told the European Scrutiny Committee that the only way to make the Protocol work was to “hugely reduce or eliminate the barriers” that have effectively created a border down the Irish Sea since it came into force in January.
Boris Johnson used a phone call on Tuesday with his Dublin counterpart Micheal Martin to urge “pragmatism” in order to mend the issues being created by the Protocol, but the plans are likely to be controversial with the EU.
UK will threaten to tear up Boris Johnson’s promises on Brexit deal
Boris Johnson’s government is set to unveil plans to change its Brexit deal with the EU, less than one year after it came into effect, due to problems for businesses operating in Northern Ireland.
Brandon Lewis, the Northern Ireland secretary, will make a statement to the House of Commons today spelling out the government’s proposals for the future of the agreement, which was designed to avoid a hard border with the Republic of Ireland.
Our policy correspondent, Jon Stone, has the full story below:
Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 08:41
Irish minister insists Northern Ireland solution must be found in existing agreement
Ireland’s European affairs minister has insisted that a post-Brexit solution on Northern Ireland must be found within the existing agreement on the region.
When asked about a reported UK proposal for an “honesty box” system for checks, Thomas Byrne told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We’re going to listen carefully to what the British government have to say.
“We’re willing to discuss any creative solutions within the confines of the protocol but we have to recognise as well that Britain decided itself to leave the single market of the European Union, to apply trade rules, to apply red tape to its goods that are leaving Britain, to goods that are coming into Britain.”
Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 08:34
Brexit issues mean some products ‘will be excluded from Northern Ireland’s shelves’
Some products will be excluded from Northern Ireland’s shelves this Christmas due to problems with post-Brexit trading rules, according to the chairman of Marks & Spencer.
Archie Norman, who has requested a meeting with Brexit minister Lord Frost over the problems, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the Northern Ireland Protocol would cause “gaps on the shelves”.
“This Christmas, I can tell you already, we’re having to make decisions to delist product for Northern Ireland because it’s simply not worth the risk of trying to get it through,” the former Tory MP said.
“We’ve already made that decision. We’re waiting to see how serious it’s going to be but if it’s anything like southern Ireland (the Republic of Ireland), and at the moment it’s set to be, then it’s going to be very, very serious for customers.”
Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 08:22
You can find Brexit minister Lord Frost’s comments on the Northern Ireland Protocol from earlier this week below:
Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 08:08
Minister expected to tell EU that UK could override Northern Ireland Protocol
Ministers are set to outline their proposals for solving the “serious challenges” caused by the Northern Ireland Protocol today, with the UK government expected to tell the EU that it is prepared to override the Brexit agreement.
The move follows concerns over the passage of food from Britain to Northern Ireland, with critics warning that the rules have effectively created a new border in the Irish Sea.
Boris Johnson told his Dublin counterpart Micheal Martin on Tuesday that “pragmatism” was needed over the issue, but reports suggest that the UK will put itself on a collision course with the EU over its mooted solutions.
According to the Financial Times, Brexit minister Lord Frost will push for an “honesty box” system to allow companies in Great Britain that declare their goods are only destined for sale and use in Northern Ireland to skip border checks.
The Protocol was negotiated as part of Britain’s divorce from Brussels to avoid a hard border with Ireland, by effectively keeping Northern Ireland in the EU’s single market for goods.
Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 08:05
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Conrad Duncan21 July 2021 07:49