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Government kicks Irish border can down the road again

[ December 17, 2021   //   ]

The UK Government said on 15 December that it would further postpone introduction of post-Brexit border controls on goods moving from the island of Ireland to GB.

Irish traders will be exempt from some new Brexit import requirements from January 2022 as a consequence of the ongoing negotiations around the Northern Ireland protocol

Chief executive of FTAI Ireland, Aidan Flynn, commented: “The clarity provided will provide Irish businesses with some of the certainty they need to plan their supply chain operations effectively as the next stage of Brexit import requirements comes into force. However, Irish traders must remember that while they are exempt from the requirement of pre-notification of imports to Great Britain, they will still need to prepare to comply with the introduction of customs and sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) requirements from July 2022; traders must ensure they are as fully prepared as possible for these changes to support smooth trade flows.”

He called for full implementation of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement to become the focus of both the UK and EU governments, adding: “The cost to industry of preparing for a plethora of changes, for them to then be discarded at the last minute, is adding to the complexities and costs of doing business and adding unnecessary burdens. FTAI is continuing to press for a breakthrough on the Northern Ireland protocol negotiations, and for governments to concentrate on the implementation of the Agreement to facilitate effective trade across the UK and EU.” 

While emphasising the importance of finding suitable arrangements for the implementation of the Irish Protocol, European forwarders organisation CLECAT noted that “the continuous delays in decision-making and postponement on the phasing in of the Border Operating Model bring instability and uncertainty to trade”.

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