UK introduces legislation to invalidate the Northern Ireland Protocol in the Brexit trade agreement

The British government plans to introduce a new law overwriting some of the post-Bregit trade agreements in Northern Ireland, Liz Truss said Tuesday in protests from opposition and the European Union.

In a statement to the House of Commons, Truss said the new law would be necessary to “reduce the burden” of trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK and “guarantee that the people of Northern Ireland could do it.” Said to take. To access the same interests as the British people. “

The bill expires “in the coming weeks” and proposes separate “green” and “red” lanes for goods moving between the UK and Northern Ireland, and those destined to stay in the UK Free from EU-level checks.

In doing so, the bill “guarantees that goods moving and staying in the UK will be freed from unnecessary bureaucracy through the new Green Channel,” Mr. Truss said.

“This respects the UK’s position in the Customs Region of Northern Ireland and protects the UK’s internal markets. At the same time, products destined for the EU are subject to full checks and controls applied under EU law. I guarantee that. “

The Northern Ireland Protocol complains that Northern Ireland is effectively maintained within the EU single market while building the border of the Irish Sea between the UK states and the UK mainland. It is strongly opposed by the members.

Northern Ireland has not had a functioning local government since February, when the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), then the largest party in the regional parliament, withdrew from power-sharing executives in protest of the Protocol.

The Foreign Minister said the government would remain “open” to the “negotiated solution” with the EU, but the “urgency” of the situation meant “cannot afford to delay any further.”

DUP welcomed the announcement of the truss. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, the leader of the Democratic Unionist Party, told the Commons:

However, the main opposition Labor Party questioned the legality of the move under international law.

Threats that interfere with the Brexit trade agreement negotiated and signed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s own government can have “widespread damaging effects that undermine our ability to force others to explain their promises.” there is. Foreign Minister Stephen Dorty.

However, Truss argued that Britain’s proposal was “legal in international law,” and that the government “will eventually establish our legal position.”

The plan has also been criticized by Vice-President Maroš Šefchovic, who was involved in negotiations with Truss on the Northern Ireland Protocol, for warning that Brussels could retaliate.

“If the UK decides to move forward with a bill that does not apply to the components of the Protocol announced today, the EU needs to take all steps,” he said.

David McAllister, a German member of the European Parliament and chairman of the agency’s foreign affairs committee, warned against the unilateral action by Britain.

“One-sided actions will only make our job more difficult in possible landing zones,” he said.

“The EU has a unified stance. We want a sustainable solution within the framework of the Protocol. Re-negotiation serves no purpose. The protocol is part of the solution and It’s not a question. “

PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Chan