Amending Brexit deal will increase frictions within UK and beyond

Published by  Communications

Union Jack and EU flag on cracked wall background

The government’s decision to scrap part of its Brexit deal will increase frictions with the EU, as well as threatening the fragile political equilibrium in Northern Ireland, said a School of Law expert. 

On Monday, No 10 said it would be introducing a new UK Internal Market Bill that some say could have an impact on customs and trade rules in Northern Ireland after Brexit. The announcement comes as the UK and EU begin the eighth round of post-Brexit trade deal talks.

Dr Nikos Skoutaris, a lecturer in EU law, researches the interface between EU law, comparative constitutional law and conflict resolution theory.

Dr Skoutaris said: “The Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland aims at keeping the flow of goods between the two sides of the Irish territorial border frictionless. 

“At the same time, it raises obstacles to the movement of goods between the two sides of the Irish Sea. 

“In fact, the more distant the future relationship between the UK and the EU is, the larger the frictions introduced to the intra-UK trade. 

“Having said that, any attempt to unilaterally revise its provisions will have an impact not only in the UK-EU negotiations but also in the fragile political equilibrium in Northern Ireland.”

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