THE NORTHERN Ireland Protocol has been a flashpoint for tension between the EU and the UK for months with Brexit Minister Lord David Frost claiming the Protocol “undermines” the Good Friday Agreement, while the bloc has refused to bow down to UK demands – but what will this mean for the UK?
European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic announced new proposals for the Northern Ireland Protocol today after the UK said the agreement was not working for Northern Ireland or the rest of the UK. Brexit Minister Lord David Frost called for an “intensive talks process” with the EU earlier today – saying the current Protocol was “undermining” the Good Friday Agreement.
European Union MEPs have vowed to black efforts by Britain to reopen the Northern Ireland Protocol.
Some senior members of the European Parliament have accused Lord Frost of acting in “bad faith”.
The Brexit Minister said the EU had “moved significantly” in its position on the Protocol ahead of today’s announcement.
Lord Frost told broadcasters: “So we need to find a solution everybody can get behind, and that means looking at some of the fundamentals, it means we need to get to a solution of significant change.
“Obviously, we haven’t seen what the Commission has put forward, I hope they have moved significantly, and obviously we will look at it positively if they have, but we’ll wait and see what they come forward with, and then we’ll see what we can do.”
Mr Sefcovic outlined Brussel’s decision on British proposals for Northern Ireland.
He announced the EU will scrap up to 50 percent of customs checks on British goods entering Northern Ireland.
These same rules will also apply to meat and plant products.
Using real-time data, European customs officials would monitor trade across the Irish Sea to establish a risk-based system that would allow businesses in the province to submit simplified paperwork for any shipments from Great Britain.
UK and EU negotiators will draw up a list of food products which are deemed to be of significant national importance – including sausages.
The EU has refused to offer any concessions on the movement of pets, such as dogs, cats and ferrets, between mainland Britain and Northern Ireland.
The Commission said the introduction of pet passports would only be possible if the UK agrees to dynamically align to the bloc’s animal. “Brinkwire Summary News”.