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EU’s rejection of UK’s proposals for the North

  • Ireland
  • General


It has been reported in the Irish press that the EU’s deputy chief negotiator and her UK counterpart met for a state-of-play session to discuss the three options to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland.

The aim of the session was to devise detailed plans around options A & B agreed in December’s EU-UK agreement, namely that arrangements could be found in either a future EU-UK relationship or a bespoke solution to avoid a hard border. Devising either plan was seen as critical to avoid option C, the so-called backstop that keeps Northern Ireland effectively in the EU customs union or single market.

The EU side reportedly dismissed both of the UK’s proposals, namely: (i) a “customs partnership” that would see Britain collect tariffs for the EU on European-bound goods and apply tariffs to imported goods; and (ii) a “streamlined customs arrangement” relying on technology and specific exemptions for north-south traders in Ireland.

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