Friday 30 September 2016

The key issues facing Ireland if Brexit happens:

Published 20/05/2016 | 02:30

Campaigners hold placards as Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a speech at a Remain campaign event in his Witney constituency in Oxfordshire. Photo: PA
Campaigners hold placards as Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a speech at a Remain campaign event in his Witney constituency in Oxfordshire. Photo: PA
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1 Sterling

The currency has already weakened from about 69 pence to the euro at the end of November, to as high as 80 pence recently. It has strengthened fractionally recently as the 'remain' side has gained momentum in the polls. But if a Brexit occurs, analysts believe sterling's value could plummet, which would be bad for Irish firms exporting into Britain.

2 Trade

Ireland's trading relationship with Britain is our most important and anything that could disrupt that would be a negative, especially in terms of the imposition of tariffs or border and customs controls.

3 The North/peace process

A number of studies, including from the Nevin Economic Research Institute and Oxford Economics, warn that Northern Ireland is particularly vulnerable. It is regarded as the most exposed part of the UK to any negative consequences of Brexit, with particular concerns around the reimposition of the border.

4 Free movement of people

The common travel area between Ireland and the UK predates our entry into what is now the EU. But can it continue if the UK leaves and Ireland remains?

5 Policy challenges

Authorities here would have to rise to a massive diplomatic challenge post-Brexit to both minimise any threats to Ireland while pressing advantages around foreign direct investment.

6 Social welfare

Irish workers in the UK could lose their right to British in-work benefit such as tax credits.

Irish Independent

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