Authorization

European Commission rejects Brexit backstop plan

By Alix Culbertson, political reporter
The UK's backstop plan for the Irish frontier has been comprehensively rejected by the European Commission which said it would lead to a hard border.
In its official retort to the plan, Brussels officials questioned how the UK could carry out EU controls without "proper EU supervision and enforcement".
As Brexit secretary David Davis met with his EU counterpart, Michel Barnier, in Brussels, the Commission published its official reply to the plan.It said Westminster's idea for a temporary customs arrangement, where the entire UK remains in a customs territory, would lead to a hard Northern Ireland border.The backstop plan relies on faith from Brussels that a later trade agreement will be signed that replaces it, but EU officials doubt Britain can design a way to keep Northern Ireland out of EU rules and still have no border.They also believe there would be "serious risks of fraud on a significant resource for member states" due to "piecemeal application of EU VAT and excise rules".
European Commission rejects Brexit backstop plan

Image:
The EU said the UK's backstop plan would lead to a hard border
The Commission's reply comes three days after Mr Barnier took a swipe at Theresa May's plan to avoid a border on the island of Ireland, put forward on Thursday, saying it "raised more questions than answers".Mr Barnier suggested a border in the middle of the Irish Sea to check goods travelling across it would have to be imposed.The current deadlock on the Irish border stems from Mrs May's rejection of the EU's own proposal for a backstop solution earlier this year, which saw Brussels propose Northern Ireland effectively remaining within a customs union with the EU after Brexit.Sky News' political editor Faisal Islam said UK negotiators had hoped the remaining 27 EU member states would persuade Mr Barnier his team had gone too far in rejecting the proposal.
"That Team Barnier had rejected the terms of the Irish backstop agreement tortuously agreed by the Cabinet was known on Friday," he said."However, despondent diplomats had a kernel of hope that Michel Barnier's need to clarify his backstop jokes could be a sign that EU27 capitals felt his team had gone too far."The G7 was also an opportunity for the PM to buttonhole the leaders of France, Italy, and of course Germany.
European Commission rejects Brexit backstop plan

Image:
Prime Minister Theresa May leaves Downing Street
"But the rejection of the backstop is now pretty much comprehensive."Just after a meeting between David Davis and Michel Barnier, the Commission released a highly critical presentation asserting that the UK proposal would 'lead to a hard border' in Ireland, because the plan says nothing about regulatory alignment essentially in the single market."It also says that the backstop creates 'serious risk of fraud' on VAT, cannot work without proper EU supervision and enforcement and eventually questions: 'Is this even a backstop?' in regards of the idea of making it 'time-limited'."
More from Brexit

Government avoids EU Withdrawal Bill defeat after last-ditch deal on 'meaningful vote'


From Great Escape to Dad's Army: How Theresa May staved off key Brexit bill rebellions


Brexit funder Arron Banks walks out of MPs' questions for lunch date


Will more ministers follow Phillip Lee and resign over direction of Brexit?


How far will Tory rebels go over 'meaningful vote'?


Brexit funder Arron Banks expects 'fireworks' at hearing into Russia links

Brexit select committee chair Hilary Benn said the rejection was "not surprising because it was only half a backstop".Mrs May will now be reassuring pro-EU Tories who may rebel over the crucial Brexit Bill vote on Tuesday and Wednesday over the rejected plan.
news.sky.com
See also:
Leave a comment
News
  • Latest
  • Read
  • Commented
Calendar Content
«    Июнь 2018    »
ПнВтСрЧтПтСбВс
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930