The only way forward on issues relating to Brexit is through negotiation, Alliance Deputy Leader Stephen Farry MP has said, following resumption of talks between the UK and EU over the Northern Ireland Protocol.
It’s the first major talks since February, with technical talks coming before a meeting between Ministers. North Down MP Dr Farry said it was good discussions have now resumed.
“There has been little engagement since February, so it is good talks have now started again,” he said.
"A hard Brexit necessitates the Northern Ireland Protocol or some similar set of protections. However, the challenges it brings need to be minimised, but the relative opportunities need to be maximised. It is important Northern Ireland retains access to the EU Single Market for goods.
"The only way forward lies through negotiations. Trust is the key ingredient in both making progress and the functionality of many outcomes. By contrast, the Protocol Bill is a dead-end. Unilateral action and breaking international law are entirely counter-productive. Indeed, the Bill threatens Northern Ireland's access to the Single Market.
"There is a clear landing zone around many challenges. However, Alliance is under no illusion around the scale of the gaps needing to bridged, and the timescales that may be involved to reach solutions.”