European Commission vice president Maros Sefcovic will give a major update on the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol during a speech in Brussels. Mr Sefcovic – who is currently leading the EU’s Brexit talks – has continued to refuse to cave demands from Britain to renegotiate the troublesome trading mechanism. The UK’s Brexit minister Lord Frost wants to overhaul parts of the deal and is piling the pressure on the EU with threats of triggering Article 16, which would effectively rip up large chunks of the agreement.
Earlier this week, he warned Britain is ready to trigger Article 16 if the bloc fails to agree to changes to smooth trade with Northern Ireland, admitting the agreement had “come apart even more quickly than we feared”.
Lord Frost confirmed he would present a new set of legal texts to support the government’s earlier proposals for change to the Protocol.
The Brexit minister told the Conservative Party conference in Manchester: “Without an agreed solution soon, we will need to act, using the Article 16 safeguard mechanism, to address the impact the protocol is having on Northern Ireland.
“That may in the end be the only way to protect our country – our people, our trade, our territorial integrity, the peace process, and the benefits of this great UK of which we are all part.”
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