Saturday, 11 November 2017

Irish PM: Northern Ireland must stick with single market and customs union rules

Northern Ireland must continue to apply EU single market and customs union rules to avoid a hard border, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar has said.
The Taoiseach said the UK or Northern Ireland would not necessarily have to remain members of either as a "bespoke" arrangement could be reached.
James Brokenshire, the Northern Ireland secretary, said the UK Government is ready to be "pragmatic" in acquiring a solution to the "unique circumstances" facing the nation, regarding its currently open border with the EU.

Mr Varadkar's suggestion came after a leaked European Commission document said the Republic is making a big push for firm reassurance on the border question before the crucial EU summit in December when Theresa May is hoping to get the go-ahead for trade talks to begin.

The paper, obtained by the Daily Telegraph, said to preserve the Good Friday Agreement peace deal the Brexit deal must respect "the integrity of the internal market and the customs union".

Northern Ireland's border is one of the three key initial Brexit issues, along with expat citizens' rights and the divorce bill.

EU leaders have said "sufficient progress" must be made on all three topics before the remaining 27 leaders will give the go-ahead for trade talks.

SKY     News.