Business groups have welcomed the EU’s proposals to ease checks on goods moving between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
rganisations representing accountants, retailers and lorry drivers agreed that the proposals reduced the complexity of the protocol and the burdens on businesses.
Crona Clohisey, public policy lead at Chartered Accountants Ireland, said: “The protocol has become a cause of considerable friction between the UK and EU despite its potential to offer lasting benefits to Northern Ireland.
“The proposals put forward by the EU this evening to reduce its complexity and enable its practical implementation are pragmatic and will not unduly prejudice the integrity of the EU’s single market.”
However, she added that a the recent emphasis by the UK government on opposition to a continued role for the European Court of Justice in policing the protocol had “dismayed” the organisation.
“None of our members in Northern Ireland have approached us citing this as an area of concern for them or their business,” she said.
A spokesman for the Northern Ireland Business Brexit Working Group, a coalition of 14 organisations including Manufacturing NI, the Institute of Directors in NI and the NI Retail Consortium, said: “We welcome signs of movement from both sides, which we have always said would be necessary if we were to find a lasting solution.
“If these proposals are to work, they must meet the tests that have been set out by the Northern Ireland business community — namely, that they must provide stability, certainty, simplicity and affordability.
“Some of the solutions being mooted go some way towards meeting those tests. However, we will reserve judgement until we have seen both legal and technical texts.”
Retail NI chief executive Glyn Roberts said the proposals were evidence that both sides were “in solution mode”.
“This moves the situation forward and hopefully to a long-term solution which gives our members greater stability in trading with suppliers and wholesalers,” he added.
Logistics UK, which represents lorry drivers, said it felt “cautious optimism”.
Its Northern Ireland policy manager Seamus Leheny explained: “The proposed solutions concerning the level of required data and checks associated with sanitary and phytosanitary and customs procedures are welcome and could reduce administration, costs and time associated with moving goods, especially food products, parcels, medicines and mixed-load consignments from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.”
“However, as always, the devil is in the detail, and Logistics UK is awaiting both the technical and legal texts before passing final judgement.
“Logistics UK will continue to work closely with both the UK government and the European Commission to discuss these proposals in full.”
Denial of responsibility! Vertical Lobby is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – email@example.com. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.