Friday 20 September 2019

Remaining sticking points for UK exit

Stock photo: PA Wire/PA Images
Stock photo: PA Wire/PA Images

The deal dictates the backstop will remain in place "unless and until" a deal on the future relationship is done. It means Northern Ireland will remain in the same customs territory as the rest of the UK, and the EU, but there will be additional rules for Northern Ireland. The protocol has lead to accusations that Britain risks being too tied to the EU and that there will be a border down the Irish Sea.

* Mutual consent is required to come out of the backstop, something Theresa May admitted she shares concerns on.

* The transition period will kick in on March 29 when the UK leaves the union. The draft deal now includes a provision to say that the transition period can be extended if necessary, which will not sit well with Brexiteers.

* The UK-wide custom's arrangement detailed in the deal will mean that the UK will have to abide by EU rules on trade and goods but will not have any say in setting those rules which critics have argued creates a democratic deficit.

* The regaining of control over its waters has been a major bone of contention for the UK. The draft deal does not deal with the issue decisively, instead pushing it down the road to be dealt with by 2020 - something which has led to calls for more clarity. However, the draft leaves fisheries outside of the single EU-UK customs zone if the backstop is triggered.

Irish Independent

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