This will end with a horrible crash

This will end with a horrible crash

A critic famously wrote about Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot that “nothing happened, twice”. That is pretty much what has been happening in the Brexit debate for the last couple of months, which is why we have written very little…

Border residents more informed but not reassured over hard border

Border residents more informed but not reassured over hard border

The cross border organisation ICBAN and Queen’s University have published a new study on border residents views on the impact of Brexit.  Brexit at the Border finds that generally people are more informed about the issues, partly because it is…

It's the post-Brexit economy, stupid

It’s the post-Brexit economy, stupid

One can only have the utmost sympathy for EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier as he valiantly tries to nail the latest helpings of Brexit porridge to the hard wall of economic reality. One must have admiration too for his patient,…

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…

Will we need food patrols on the border?

Will we need food patrols on the border?

The debate on the border has focused on how Northern Ireland might be kept in ‘the’ or at least ‘a’ customs union with the EU. This still leaves the question of how the agri-food industry north and south would have…

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…

Brexit will have structural impact on Irish economy

Brexit will have structural impact on Irish economy

The Brexit debate has focused largely on the threats to goods exports and particularly to agri-food if we end up trading with the UK on the basis of World Trade Organisation tariffs. But as noted in a recent article, we…

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…

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…