EU chief tells UK it's 'high time we get Brexit done' over Northern Ireland Protocol

6/30/2022 1:22:00 AM

The European Commission's vice president Maros Sefcovic echoed Boris Johnson's 2019 election slogan in a speech in which he accused the UK of a 'my way or the highway' approach.

European Commission vice president Maros Sefcovic said it was 'high time we got Brexit done' as he fired the latest salvo against Boris Johnson's government over the Northern Ireland Protocol

The European Commission's vice president Maros Sefcovic echoed Boris Johnson's 2019 election slogan in a speech in which he accused the UK of a 'my way or the highway' approach.

Brexit Britain has rejected proposals by the EU to resolve the impasse.Brexit trading arrangements, was designed to prevent the return of a hard border with the Republic of Ireland.Make informed decisions with the FT Keep abreast of significant corporate, financial and political developments around the world.Image caption, Honkongers living in the UK struggle with questions of their nationality "Looking back, 1997 is a lie," says Thomas Fung, a Hong Kong-born accountant who now lives in Oxford.

Brussels says these would reduce checks on certain goods by 80%, cut customs paperwork in half and allow the movement of certain goods that would otherwise be restricted such as sausages.Mr Sefcovic said Brexit had increased red tape and hurt businesses on both sides of the Channel but that the EU now wanted to move on from it"to a truly strategic EU-UK partnership".The UK government says it wants to renegotiate the deal, but accuses Brussels of intransigence and claims that it has no choice but to introduce legislation.He accused Britain of adopting a"my way or the highway" approach."We indeed find ourselves in a difficult situation, which will most certainly not simply disappear," he added.Read more: Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player 3:35 What is the Northern Ireland Protocol? 'Is it worth negotiating with these people?' Foreign Secretary Liz Truss told MPs preparing to vote on the legislation on Monday that the political situation cannot be allowed to drift and that the plan was"both legal and necessary"."You may not hear this often from a European Commissioner, but it is high time we got Brexit done.Thousands have left - and are still leaving.

" Mr Sefcovic's comments echoed Boris Johnson's 2019 election pledge.She added that key aims of the legislation - bringing the DUP back into government and encouraging Brussels to negotiate - were also doubtful.They came during a speech at the London HQ of financial news and data provider Bloomberg, where in 2013 David Cameron had announced his intention to hold a referendum on EU membership.Mr Sefcovic said the EU"has its limits" in what it can offer and must protect the integrity of the single market.It was unrealistic and unfair, he said, for the UK to expect"that all barriers can be lifted when goods move to Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK"."Post-Brexit, the pre-Brexit reality is no longer an option," Mr Sefcovic added.4 million people, 70% of Hong Kong's population - the right to live, work and study in the UK with a route to citizenship.

He said for the UK to"unilaterally change the game and decide what enters the EU's single market" amounted to"a clear violation of international law".Mr Sefcovic said Britain's plan to override the protocol would"lead to constant uncertainty"."Ministers in London would have the freedom to change the rules on a whim."A dual regulatory regime - where businesses opt for EU or UK regulations - would bury them under a mountain of bureaucracy." Mr Sefcovic insisted that, with stability and legal certainty about the protocol arrangements, Northern Ireland could be enjoying"jam on both sides of the bread" through its unique position, making it a magnet for investment."I was too small to feel the fear myself but I remember that no-one said a positive thing about the handover," he says.

The speech comes days after the prime minister's plan to override the protocol despite fierce criticism led by former prime minister Theresa May.Earlier this month, to the publication of the bill by restarting legal action against the UK for allegedly breaching the EU withdrawal treaty as well as launching two new legal infringement actions.Related Topics.

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