A British business founder and entrepreneur has signposted the governments on both sides of the Irish sea towards a “simple solution” to fix the ongoing Brexit border dispute in Northern Ireland. Alan Jones, the CEO of messaging app YEO, has pointed to a “straightforward” system utilising readily available blockchain technology which could track goods in transit and help eliminate customs friction for businesses.
Mr Jones told Express.co.uk: “It sounds very simple, but what you’re actually doing is you’re authenticating and you’re are sealing goods in transit, and you are tracking their position at all times.
“So that offered the government a very simple solution that would have fit in with the customs on both sides and provided something that would be very easy to utilise, documentation would be pretty straightforward.
“Through the use of blockchain you’ve got an irrefutable trail of the information at all stages, and by geofencing codes in order to unlock seals to the destination depo, you could also be assured of the integrity of goods in transit.
“So very, very straightforward.”
He added: “I feel that there’s technology there today that is able to actually ensure the integrity of goods crossing the border and would eliminate any of this friction and general overhead that they’ve got today.”
It comes as the latest bid to restore Northern Ireland’s powersharing institutions has failed.
The attempt to elect an Assembly speaker – a prerequisite of reconstituting the devolved legislature – was always set to fail, due to an ongoing DUP block on the operation of Stormont.
Devolution in Belfast has been in flux since February when the DUP withdrew its first minister from the governing executive in protest at the economic border created in the Irish Sea by Brexit’s Northern Ireland Protocol.
The party has vetoed several attempts to resuscitate the powersharing institutions following May’s Assembly election.
Two previous bids to elect a speaker, which would open the way for the nomination of first and deputy first ministers and the formation of a new executive, have also failed.
Controversial Government legislation that would empower UK ministers to unilaterally override the protocol on Irish Sea trade, which it agreed with the EU in 2019, is currently making its way through Parliament.
The DUP has linked its return to Stormont with the progress of the Bill.
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Brexit has taken a prominent place in the Conservative leadership contest with the next Prime Minister set for a showdown with Brussels not least over the workings of the Protocol.
Liz Truss has said she will unleash investment and boost economic growth by taking “full advantage” of Brexit if she becomes prime minister. The Tory leadership hopeful said she would implement supply side reforms, including reforming Solvency II and The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFid) regulations.
Solvency II is a directive that codifies and harmonises the EU insurance regulation. MiFid is a regulation that increases the transparency across the European Union’s financial markets and standardises the regulatory disclosures required for firms operating in the EU.
Her campaign said such a move would release billions for investment in British infrastructure, energy projects and the high-tech industry.