Northern Ireland Protocol: Implementation

Published date : 02 February, 2021
I extend my best wishes to Mr Poots for a speedy recovery. The indication from the EU that it was considering triggering article 16 was a significant error of judgment—albeit one that was quickly walked back. Nevertheless, it was a mis-step that has followed significant problems with the Northern Ireland protocol, with businesses facing delays—and perhaps not helped by the Prime Minister saying that he would have no hesitation in triggering article 16 after spending months denying that there would be any kind of post-Brexit checks between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

We now have a situation that has escalated to the point that port inspection staff have needed to be withdrawn from their duties over concerns for their safety, which is completely unacceptable. Can the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster give me an assurance and explain how he intends to work with the Northern Ireland Executive, the Irish Government and the EU to de-escalate all the issues around this matter and explain what further steps he will take to ensure that the protocol—an agreement entered into freely—works as it needs to for the benefit of all in Northern Ireland?

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