The DUP & ERG claim there's an alternative to the #Protocol: ‘Mutual enforcement’.

Whilst it is a clever name (implying cooperation+ tough action), in reality it is really not viable.
Here's a brief thread.

TLDR: 'taking back control' was so 2016.

The primary intention of this model is to see the #border for the movement of goods shift from the Irish Sea to the Irish land border.

But to keep that border ‘invisible’, it has UK&IRL authorities enforcing the rules of the other jurisdiction.

Leaving all other considerations aside, it has to address the cornerstones of border management👇

We can see that it fails on all of them, i.e. there is no border to speak of.

It claims to work by ‘inverting the usual approach to customs enforcement’. This is indeed true😬

3/6 Image
It justifies this in terms of the old chestnut of GATT Article XXI: ‘allowing the reasonable transgression of GATT rules on the basis of safeguarding public order’.⚠️

But 'security risk' is hardly a good grounding for the future trading/development of the island of Ireland.

A 2nd problem is that it means that neither the UK nor the EU are properly managing their external border.

And this has consequences for what is inside their borders.

This won't help the quest for juicy FTAs for Global Britain. Partners want to know what they are getting.

The trickiest border controls are for plant/animal-related products. To properly minimise these requires alignment.

This doc suggests EU shd recognise NI SPS checks as fully equivalent. Only hope of that is for NI not to diverge from these rules even if GB does...

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More from @hayward_katy

7 Jan
A thread on the #Brexit dish of the day:
Article 16 of the NI/IRL #Protocol.

There’s momentum (👋@uuponline @duponline) gathering behind the idea that the UK Govt should trigger safeguard measures re: the Protocol.

(Yes, already)

Why so, & what might it do?
TL;DR: zilch

First, why the calls for it?
#Brexit means change to UK-EU trade, & the #Protocol means that that is taking effect down the Irish Sea.

There was too little time & too little info to prepare.

There are [wholly predictable] consequences.
Why invoke #Art16 of the Protocol?

It allows unilateral #safeguard measures - a common/necessary feature in trade agmts.

The purpose is to create a temporary breathing space in response to an unforeseen & sudden negative effect arising from the agmt.

Here's what it says👇
3/11 Image
Read 11 tweets
29 Dec 20
"Cut-out-and-keep" ✂️📌

A 4-tweet thread for every person living in N.Ireland who might well wonder what #Brexit means in practical terms.

Travelling, studying, working, driving, shopping, roaming in the EU after 1st Jan... & what will change on the island of Ireland too.

Those born in N.Ireland have a birthright to Irish citizenship, & Irish citizens retain EU citizenship rights.

Because Brexit means #Brexit, British citizens no longer have those rights, & there will be a change in visiting, staying and working in the EU after 1st January.

But regardless of citizenship, there are big changes ahead in practical matters.

Those in NI are affected by the terms of the UK-EU Trade & Cooperation Agreement...
But there are also some differences for those in NI.

Read 4 tweets
24 Dec 20
A very brief thread on how the #deal looks from N. Ireland.

In NI we're looking both east/west & north/south, as well as across to the wider EU.

[It is brief because I'm just going on the ltd EU info that we have👇
And because it's Xmas Eve, obvs 🎅]
You know this already, but:

The #Protocol means NI-EU mvnt of goods remains as it is at the moment in terms of paperwork.

But it also means GB-NI mvnt of goods is like a mini version of what happens GB-EU.
ie. ⬆️ GB-EU friction/divergence, the ‘harder’ the Irish Sea Border

The #Deal means fewer goods considered ‘at risk’, which is a huge relief re: tariffs GB-NI.
But the ‘friction’ arising from SM rules, esp agri-food, is not much relieved by this deal.

Mitigations agreed last wk are the biggest help (for now).
Read 6 tweets
9 Dec 20
A brief & simple thread on a long & complicated #Taxation Bill💶💷

This sees aspects of NI/IRL #Protocol brought into effect

TL;DR The Irish Sea is now a #customs border.
What this means in practice depends on UK-EU deal + details of y'day's JC agmt
#TaxationBill is infamous:

To push agmt on the #Protocol, UKG threatened to use this Bill to breach it [I'm aware that sounds nonsensical]

What UKG wd hv broken was the need for *joint* UK-EU decisions on how to implement the Protocol.
We're told they have these ready now.

First, one ‘boon’ for NI from the #Protocol & confirmed in this #Bill, UK-EU Deal or No Deal:

EU goods entering NI will be treated as domestic goods & will not be charged import duty.

VAT/excise rules for mvnts btn NI & EU will continue to apply, ‘modified as necessary’.

Read 8 tweets
27 Nov 20
One chapter of the interim #Report on Irish unification referendums @ConUnit_UCL contains analysis of public #opinion polls & surveys in NI, GB & Ireland on the subject. 📊📈📉

Do see the report for the details & sources, but here's a snapshot...

There's been a narrowing of the gap in recent yrs btn pro-Union & pro-Unity responses, & an increasing proportion think a united Ireland will happen at some point.
But if a #referendum were held tomorrow in NI, the combined evidence wouldn’t point to a clear majority Yes vote
2/8 Image
Online polling shows higher support for unification than interview-based surveying, even when don’t knows are excluded. 📊

It is important to bear these methodological differences in mind in assessing this evidence. But both types have their place.

3/8 Image
Read 8 tweets
26 Nov 20
If there was to be a #BorderPoll, how shd it best be designed & conducted?

A gp of academics convened to answer that Q… & we found it to be far from straightforward*
Here’s our interim report
+a few thoughts
*Not just cos we like complicating things
The Working Gp was excellently chaired & expertly run… but it was no easy task.

Not just due to our various views/disciplines, but cos there was almost no element that cd not be interpreted in different ways.

Each part of this #report was laboriously debated & discussed.

We learned that legal matters were one thing (😬) but if we also try to adhere to the #1998Agmt in underlying principles, it becomes even more challenging.

This is only right.

Inclusivity, consensus, British-Irish cooperation… remain essential.
They are also hard-earned.
Read 8 tweets

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