Why the Republic and Northern Ireland need shared regulatory frameworks | UK in a changing Europe

This is a timely article on the reasons a shared regulatory framework is necessary between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

Ireland is hogging the Brexit headlines. While some reports suggest that the UK and EU are close to a solution on the vexed question of the Irish border, still others maintain that the Democratic Unionist Party, on which Theresa May depends for her slim Commons majority, will not accept any differentiation between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom.

And yet such differentiation has to be granted if the UK government intends to square the circle it has drawn. Somehow, the UK must leave the single market and customs union while providing the Republic with the political commitment it has demanded that the intra-Irish border must remain invisible.

Throughout last summer, British, Irish and EU officials undertook a detailed “mapping” exercise intended to examine all the areas of north-south co-operation which would be affected by Brexit. They identified more than 140 such areas. The exercise has served to underline the serious challenges posed by any regulatory divergence between the Republic and the North.

The Irish border question is not simply about sectarianism. Nor, indeed, is it all about tariffs. It is also about rules, and the impact those rules have on ordinary people on both sides of the border. These citizens live in a world in which the existence of the same regulatory framework shapes numerous aspects of their daily lives.

Source: Why the Republic and Northern Ireland need shared regulatory frameworks – UK in a changing Europe


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4 thoughts on “Why the Republic and Northern Ireland need shared regulatory frameworks | UK in a changing Europe

  1. aunty1960

    Yeah, the one thing the Irish problem needs is another armchair English opinion on it.

    Or someone can always hire a open truck, drive it between Belfast and Scotland, drive it to a port, cross to the continent, drive and park it near EU headquarters and have another Canary Wharf experience. They will need two trucks, one for Brussels and one for Strasborg.

    It always gets my back up when others talk about Northern Ireland and Irish problem. You have to be there to live it, Grandparents from both sides, Protestant and Catholic married. I always dislike and am aware of the disdain, disgust and aloofness our English and even Welsh opinionists and bloggers have.

    I dont think they should mess with both sides of have families, communities and businesses cut off with a hard border, really would not push that one.

    This is why NI gets angry, only considered and remembered when it does something

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Anand Menon is Professor of European Politics and Foreign Affairs at King’s College London in the United Kingdom and was appointed in January 2014 as director of the UK in a Changing Europe initiative. He was a special adviser to the House of Lords EU committee.

      And you think he offers an “armchair English opinion”.

  2. Barry Davies

    There are about 400 Irish people who cross the border between north and south each day, this is not a large insurmountable problem and if brussels had not decided to make it a problem, as with most things, then it could have been settled quite easily, it is always easier to settle problems without 26 foreign nations who have no understanding of the situation sticking their noses in.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      And what about the Irish and Northern Irish people who DO have knowledge and understanding of the situation, and who DO say that it is a serious matter?
      I think it’s you who have no understanding of this matter. Perhaps you should hold your peace about it.

Comments are closed.