The EU Committee has today written to Karen Bradley MP, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, to raise concerns about the lack of clarity on how the Government will resolve the tensions between its aspirations to leave the customs union, avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland and ensure no new regulatory barriers between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.
The Committee have carried out a series of evidence sessions including sessions in Dublin, Belfast and Derry/Londonderry and visits to stakeholders based on the Irish border, as part of a follow up to its December 2016 report on UK-Irish relations post-Brexit.
- Given the imminent publication by the European Commission of a draft legal text emerging from the December EU/UK joint report, any differences of interpretation on issues relating to UK-Irish relations must be settled now.
- The avoidance of a hard border on the island of Ireland cannot be at the expense of new barriers between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.
- The report calls on the Government to reassert unreservedly its commitment to upholding the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement in its entirety.