The Haltemprice and Howden MP said the frictions caused by Brussels in its implementation of the 2019 withdrawal agreement would have a long-lasting impact. He suggested relations with the bloc would not recover until beyond 2030, with Northern Ireland continuing to suffer in the meantime.
Ministers are urging the EU to renegotiate the Northern Ireland protocol, agreed upon during Brexit negotiations, because of the impact it is having on the UK’s internal market.
Unionists say Brussels’ purist approach to imposing bureaucratic customs checks on goods crossing the Irish Sea to Northern Ireland is putting off many companies from shipping to the province.
Many Brexiteers accuse the EU of being heavy-handed in a bid to punish the UK for leaving.
Mr David said: “It was always going to be the case there was going to be a bitter period because they were angry.
“This is their project. I’d be angry if I were them.”
He said relations between the two partners were “largely recoverable” but that Northern Ireland would continue to cause fiction.
Admitting it would take a number of years to fix the issues of the province, he told Politico: “Ireland’s going to take a long time.
“It’s going to take a decade to get right, I think.
“Maybe I’m wrong about a decade, but it’s going to take years.”
Earlier this week Foreign Secretary enraged the EU when she unveiled new legislation that will override parts of the Protocol.
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The Bill set to be debated and voted in on Parliament in the months ahead, will give the Government the power to make changes to the way customs checks are implemented without asking permission from Brussels.
Ms Truss says the measure is being taken after a failure of the EU to compromise in talks on the issue.
The European Commission has responded by vowing to take legal action against the UK and has also threatened to introduce tariffs.
Their response risks triggering a trade war with the UK in the middle of a global cost of living crisis.
European Commission vice-president Maros Sefcovic last night attacked the UK for “political point-scoring” with the Bill.
He added: “We are in a fixing business, but I am afraid to say what was tabled on Monday is very much nixing.
“It is very much ripping up the Protocol and I don’t think that is good for anyone.”
Speaking to Sky News he said the row over the Protocol was “very damaging for our relationship” at a time “when we need to build and consolidate this western unity”.