Published: Mon, July 23, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Brexit Headache: PM Theresa May starts two-day visit to Northern Ireland

Brexit Headache: PM Theresa May starts two-day visit to Northern Ireland

She will say the deal will put the United Kingdom on the way to "a prosperous future, protecting jobs and boosting prosperity" at the same time as honouring the 2016 referendum result, adding: "I am passionate about that brighter future and the possibilities that are within our grasp".

Mrs May was meeting business representatives on the Northern Ireland side of the border on Thursday afternoon.

Postmistress and shop owner Michelle Gallagher said she hoped to give the PM a copy of the Belleek calendar for next year, which contains the details of all the local businesses.

Theresa May is "confident".

Mr Varadkar said: "We've done a lot of preparations already, the public finances are in good order, I know some people are telling me we shouldn't set up a rainy day fund and that we shouldn't go about balancing the books, but if we do run into trouble over the next couple of years, it will be because of Brexit".

Under EU law Ireland would be legally required to perform customs checks and sanitary and phytosanitary checks at the border to protect public health, trading standards and revenues.

"Theresa May needs to realise that we will not be collateral damage her for own reckless Tory agenda".

Brexiteer Mrs Foster insisted Mrs May would come away hearing of the challenges and opportunities presented by Brexit.

Amid the ongoing power-sharing impasse at Stormont, Mrs May is meeting the five main political parties on her two day visit to Northern Ireland, which included her first visit to the Irish border since the Brexit referendum.

In the event of a hard no-deal Brexit, the European Union wants a backstop that would effectively create a border down the Irish Sea between the island of Ireland and Great Britain.

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"I fully recognise how their livelihoods, families and friends rely on the ability to move freely across the border to trade, live and work on a daily basis", she said.

"In the Northern Ireland of today, where a seamless border enables unprecedented levels of trade and cooperation North and South, any form of infrastructure at the border is an alien concept", May said.

They seemed to believe that Ireland would fold on its position that a hard border...

"We've produced a proposal which would enable us to have a free trade area between the United Kingdom and the European Union and a customs arrangement that would mean people here would continue to be able to trade seamlessly across the border and there will be no hard border, that's what we want to see", Mrs May told the Press Association.

Theresa May arrived in Northern Ireland on Thursday afternoon for a trip to a border town in County Fermanagh, hosted by Arlene Foster, the Democratic Unionist party leader.

Northern Ireland has been without a properly functioning devolved government for 18 months due to a bitter fallout between the two biggest parties - Sinn Fein and the DUP, who are the Conservative Party's confidence and supply partners at Westminster.

Party deputy leader Nichola Mallon said Mrs May had to respect the rights of the majority (56%) who voted Remain in Northern Ireland.

Some of the amendments passed by British parliament is not helpful for negotiations.

In her speech, Mrs May will say now it is for the European Union to respond and not fall back on proposals that are unworkable.

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