UK Prime Minister Teresa May has outlined her strategy for a full Brexit but has stated that a practical solution will be found between Ireland and the North that allows for an area of common travel.
May had already rejected ‘partial membership of the European Union, associate membership of the European Union or anything that leaves us half-in, half-out.’
‘June 23 was not a moment when he chose to step back. It was a moment when we chose to build a “truly global Britain”.’
‘The United Kingdom is leaving the European Union. My job is to get the right deal for Britain as we do.’
Michel Sapin, The French finance minister accused the UK of improvising its Brexit policy.
‘We are in a situation of improvisation, a situation of going backwards and forwards between the position of engaging in gentle negotiations ... then taking a hard line that, allegedly, would allow for negotiations of better conditions.’
Brexit has a deep impact on Ireland as the only country that shares a border with the UK.
Earlier today Michael Portillo, Conservative MP told Newstalk Breakfast that he did not believe that a hard border would return between Northern Ireland and the Republic.
Former Northern Secretary Theresa Villiers told RTE Morning Ireland that; ‘Our goal should be a settlement with the European Union that keeps both sides happy.
Speaking just moments ago May stated her position on the North;
May says there will always be a special relationship between the UK and Ireland.
She says the government will find a practical solution that allows the common travel area between Ireland and Northern Ireland to be maintained.
She also spoke about the upcoming election saying;
' I hope the main parties in Northern Ireland will work to re-establish a partnership government as soon as possible.'
Number 10 released some extracts of her speech last night where May outlined her thoughts on Brexit;
‘My answer is clear. I want this United Kingdom to emerge from this period of change stronger, fairer, more united and more outward-looking than ever before. I want us to be a secure, prosperous, tolerant country – a magnet for international talent and a home to the pioneers and innovators who will shape the world ahead. I want us to be a truly Global Britain – the best friend and neighbour to our European partners, but a country that reaches beyond the borders of Europe too. A country that gets out into the world to build relationships with old friends and new allies alike.’
May outlined a 12 point objective for Brexit which included a final deal that will be put to a vote to the UK Parliament.
The sterling rose this morning ahead of May’s speech. It had fallen to below $1.20 against the dollar yesterday but rose again today to $1.2127.
The head of the Exports for the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, Peter Hardwick was also speaking this morning at a select committee.
Speaking about how much the industry will change from the current arrangements following Brexit, he says that "ultimately the level of divergence will be limited by the practicalities" of trading with the EU.
Minister Creed spoke last week on the need for Ireland to find alternative markets for our own agriculture exports. The UK accounted for 37% or €4.13 bn of food and drink exports from this country in 2016 however sterling weakness meant a drop of €570m off the value of exports.
Live exports were down for 2016 and this has placed a greater urgency on opening up new markets such as Egypt and China.