Creed meets UK Agriculture Secretary as hopes of Brexit transition deal face Irish barrier
The Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed, met with his UK counterpart, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Michael Gove on Thursday with Brexit high on the agenda.
The Minister and the Secretary of State discussed issues associated with Brexit, the agri-food and fisheries sectors as well as future UK and EU agriculture policy.
Minister Creed said this was a timely opportunity for dialogue in the context of the on-going negotiations taking place between the UK and the EU task force on the Withdrawal Agreement.
"I stressed to the Secretary of State the mutual benefit of bi-lateral trade in Agri-food and fisheries and the importance of coming to an agreement which allows such trade to continue as seamlessly as possible without undermining the integrity of the single market.”
Prime Minister Theresa May and British businesses are banking on European Union leaders granting a Brexit transition deal next week but diplomats said they could face disappointment unless a deadlock is broken over the Irish border.
May’s spokesman said on Thursday she remained “confident” of a deal that would reassure investors that little will change in trading with the bloc for around two years after Britain leaves next March and until a new trade pact can be agreed.
EU diplomats and officials said talks have raised their hopes too that, with London anxious for a quick deal, the bloc’s leaders can endorse a transition at a Brussels summit on Friday.
But what some described as complete stalemate on Irish border arrangements risks derailing any agreement.