On Wednesday, the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson proposed a new Brexit plan during the Conservative Party conference in Manchester which contains what he calls “constructive and reasonable proposals which provide a compromise for both sides." He further mentioned that the country was ready to leave the EU with no deal on 31st October if no agreement was reached, even though the law dictates that a deadline extension has to be sough if such circumstances arise.
An already messy break up from the European Union – UK faces many concerns. One of the most pertinent being the border between Northern Ireland (part of UK) and Ireland (part of EU). This border is especially import for trade & commerce. Being part of the EU, United Kingdom was subjected to the custom and tariff regulations of the European Union’s Customs Union. But now the border, which already has a violent history, has to be addressed so as to not disturb the Good Friday Agreement.
The government wants UK to leave EU Customs Union. This would lead to Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to be completely separate regions from the point of view of trade and custom duty. Such separation would lead all trade between the two regions to be accompanied with custom declarations (so as to impose the correct tariffs). This would make it impossible for Irish border to be as open as it is right now.
Prime Minister Boris proposed that instead of installing check points at the border, the custom declarations are to be submitted electronically. The actual custom check are to happen at random and never at the border. These inspections would be carried out at the warehouses or at designated points across Ireland and Northern Ireland.
For the regulations on goods being traded and manufactured, Prime Minister Boris states that Northern Ireland will comply with the EU’s single market rules rather than the UK rules. This would remove all standard and quality check requirements as both would a part of an “all-island regulatory zone.” This resolution would be subject to approval in the Northern Ireland Legislative Assembly every 4 year. On the other hand, such resolution would lead to standard and quality checks for all goods entering UK from Northern Ireland along with physical infrastructure in the form of Border Inspection Posts to be installed.
Today an extensive debate was held in the British House of Commons to opine about the deal. Many MPs are against the proposal laid down, calling it unrealistic and ‘not a serious alternative’. The Irish Deputy Minister Simon Coveney has already been quoted saying “If that is the final proposal, there will be no deal.” MEP and chair of European Parliament Brexit Steering Committee, Guy Verhofstadt has also gone on recording stating that the European Parliament is "very sceptical" about PM Johnson’s proposals.
Tags : United Kingdom; Brexit; European Union; Ireland