Business chiefs fear plans are not feasible
Business chiefs here have welcomed the UK's plans for a transition customs deal to avoid chaos for firms, but were cautious about the feasibility of some of the proposals.
Goods exports to Britain surged 14pc in the first six months of the year, suggesting the sector is weathering the Brexit-induced weakness in the pound.
Chambers Ireland said London's belief that interim customs arrangements would be negotiated and implemented before the end of March 2019 appears wildly optimistic. The British Irish Chamber of Commerce said it is important that this phase is as close to the status quo as possible, with minimum disruption caused by tariff and non-tariff barriers.
"While this paper is definitely a positive step and a constructive contribution to the negotiating process, we are cautious about the feasibility of some of the proposals put forward," said director general of the British Irish Chamber John McGrane.
Chambers Ireland chief executive Ian Talbot said nearly five months on from the UK's decision to trigger Article 50, businesses have felt frustrated by the absence of detail from the UK.
"The UK's position that the desired interim customs arrangements would be negotiated and implemented before the end of March 2019 appears wildly optimistic."
Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce said the most important thing is to have clarity.