Alliance Brexit spokesperson Stephen Farry MLA has said it is “farcical” for the UK Government to suggest cross-border businesses should contact the Irish Government for advice in the event of a no deal Brexit.
Dr Farry was speaking after Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab made the statement as he released the first of a series of Government ‘EU Exit Technical Notices’ giving information in the case of a no deal situation.
“So far these ‘technical notices’ are exercises in hope and wishful thinking rather than facing up to reality. The UK cannot unilaterally withdraw from a complex set of relationships built up over many decades without major consequences. Things cannot be expected to continue as before,” said Dr Farry.
“Little consideration has been given to the differential impact of a no deal scenario upon Northern Ireland. In particular, there is no clarity on how a hard border on the island of Ireland can be avoided. Northern Ireland businesses and other stakeholders are going to be left in limbo for even longer. It is farcical the best the UK Government can suggest is to seek answers from the Irish Government and the European Commission.
“Any no deal Brexit would be catastrophic for the UK as a whole and for Northern Ireland in particular. Indeed, any type of Brexit is going to bring huge problems. The focus therefore should not be on a false choice between a no deal Brexit and the half-baked Chequers plan. Rather the serious options need to be a reconsideration of Brexit itself via a People’s Vote or putting in place a comprehensive set of arrangements for Northern Ireland.”