300 million to none?

300 million to none?

A number of thoughts occur following the recent announcement by the Irish Government of a 300 million euro Brexit loan scheme for Irish business.  The loans, backed by the European Investment Fund, are for future working capital requirements to fund…

Things that will never happen on the Brexit border

In a Radio Ulster look-back interview this morning former First Minister Peter Robinson admitted that on the basis of the economic case, he would have favoured the UK remaining in the EU. However, ‘we are where we are’ and he…

Smart or not?

Smart or not?

Compare the present Irish border with what is outlined in the the European Parliament’s Constitutional Affairs Committee’s  Smart Border 2.0 report and its clear that a future border arrangement, with or without a political agreement, will be anything but frictionless. Commissioned by…

Time not certainty

Time not certainty

Here is the text of the agreement between the EU and UK  following the St Patrick’s weekend negotiations.  On Ireland, the UK confirmed it would accept the “backstop” solution of aligning with EU regulations to prevent a hard border with the…

Will it end with a Big Bang on the border?

The Russian plot has rescued Theresa May from the daily Brexit grind for a little while, but the reality checks are piling up on her desk. From where we are standing, absolutely nothing has changed since Theresa May  signed up…

Lines are now drawn.

Here is the full text of the European Parliament withdrawal agreement and already it is clear that it will produce a defining point in these negotiations opening as it does the prospect of Northern Ireland remaining within the customs union and single…

Who will say - “We shall not be removed” from Europe!

Who will say – “We shall not be removed” from Europe!

There is no political mandate to change the status of Northern Ireland by taking it out of the EU. So where are the calls for peaceful democratic resistance to defeat this ‘monstrous conspiracy?’ Exiting will take with it rights and…

Sweden-Norway border no model for Ireland

Sweden-Norway border no model for Ireland

Brexiteers and others who wish to play down the difficulties British withdrawal from the EU is going to cause like to point to best practice on the Swedish-Norwegian border. Specifically, they point to the use of technology including CCTV with…

The 2018 Brexit business challenge

Enterprise Ireland continues to warn that Brexit means 2018 is going to be a challenging year for Irish companies.  It is also echoing research from IntertradeIreland that even yet many companies have not got plans in place to mitigate potential…

For the record: Phase II negotiating guidelines

For the record: Phase II negotiating guidelines

Following the David Davis ‘statement of intent’ interview, the EU is clearly intent on getting the terms of the Phase I agreement tied down before moving on. In its guidelines for Phase II talks the European Council has specified that…