Brexit: EU pauses legal action over Northern Ireland deal

28 July 2021, 14:13

The Northern Ireland Protocol will mean goods will have to be checked when entering the single market from Great Britain.
The Northern Ireland Protocol will mean goods will have to be checked when entering the single market from Great Britain. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

The EU has paused legal action against the UK over the Northern Ireland Protocol.

The decision was made in hopes further discussions could help resolve any outstanding issues.

It comes after Brexit minister Lord Frost previously demanded significant changes be made to the Protocol - an element of the deal he negotiated - saying "we cannot go on as we are".

He called for a "standstill" period, preserving current grace periods and suspending legal action while changes were negotiated.

An EU spokeswoman said "constructive discussions" were important moving forward, but there would not be a renegotiation of the Protocol.

Read more: Business Secretary says Northern Ireland Protocol is 'not set in stone'

Read more: 'We cannot go on as we are': EU to 'find new path' over Northern Ireland

Bailey suggests Boris Johnson messed up promises on NI

"While the EU will not renegotiate the Protocol, we stand ready to address all the issues arising in the practical implementation of the Protocol in a spirit of good faith and cooperation," she said.

"It is essential that we continue constructive discussions in the weeks ahead.

"With regards to the request for a standstill, the Commission will carefully assess the new proposals made by the UK, in accordance with the necessary consultation procedures, both internally, and with the European Parliament.

"In order to provide the necessary space to reflect on these issues and find durable solutions to the implementation of the Protocol, we have decided, at this stage, not to move to the next stage of the infringement procedure, started in March."

Read more: Sir Jeffrey Donaldson: PM hasn't delivered Brexit promises to Northern Ireland

A UK Government spokeswoman said: "We have received a constructive reply from the Commission in response to our request for a standstill on existing arrangements.

"We look forward to engaging in talks with the EU in the weeks ahead to progress the proposals in our command paper.

"As we set out in the Command Paper last week, significant changes are needed to ensure the Protocol is sustainable for future."

The Protocol keeps Northern Ireland in the EU's single market for goods.

It was put in place to ensure there would be no hard border with Ireland, but it has instead placed a trade barrier in the Irish Sea.

As a result, there could be checks on goods being sent from Britain to the single market as well as potential prohibitions on products that do not comply with EU rules.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Mohammed Abbkr

Paranoid schizophrenic who set fire to two elderly Muslims outside mosques given indefinite hospital order

A toddler has been left in critical condition after being bitten by a dog.

Toddler in critical condition after being bitten by 'large breed' dog in Cheltenham home

TOWIE stars Joey Essex and Mark Argent have been left stranded in Dubai

TOWIE stars Joey Essex and James Argent stranded in Dubai flash floods as they try to hitchhike in ankle-deep water

Malmo Arena

Protests and terror threat mean tight security at Eurovision Song Contest

Exclusive
Humza Yousaf hit back at the author.

JK Rowling's 'contempt for women' accusation over misogyny law is 'astonishing and illogical', Humza Yousaf tells LBC

Author Sophie Kinsella has revealed she is battling brain cancer

Bestselling Shopaholic author Sophie Kinsella reveals she has been diagnosed with aggressive form of brain cancer

Karen Hadaway and Nicola Fellows

Police apologise for failings in investigation into 1986 Babes in the Wood murders of Karen Hadaway and Nicola Fellows

A protester uses a loudhailer during a rally in Athens

Unions in Greece call widespread strikes, seeking return of bargaining rights

Some have claimed cloud seeding may be behind recent flooding in Dubai.

Did controversial ‘cloud seeding’ flights cause torrential downpours and huge flooding in Dubai?

Mick Donovan kidnapped Shannon Matthews over 15 years ago

Shannon Matthews' kidnapper Michael Donovan 'dies of cancer' 16 years after hiding schoolgirl in his bed for 3 weeks

Russian soldiers take part in a military exercise in the Donetsk region of Ukraine

14 killed as Russian missiles slam into Ukrainian city

David Cameron has said it is 'clear' Israel is planning to act

Israel is 'making decision to act', David Cameron says in Jerusalem as he urges Netanyahu not to escalate Iran conflict

Starmer and Sunak went head-to-head in the first post-Easter PMQs session

Starmer accuses Sunak of promising £46bn unfunded tax cut as he taunts PM about Liz Truss’ new book at PMQs

David wrote "50 never looked so good"

'50 and fit!': David Beckham shares never-before-seen photos of Victoria as she celebrates her 50th birthday

A homeless person sleeps near the Eiffel Tower

French police evict hundreds from abandoned Paris warehouse ahead of Olympics

Exclusive
Urgent warning to parents as doctor 'arriving from Bangladesh' advertising 'miracle autism cure'

Urgent warning to parents over doctor 'arriving from Bangladesh' with 'miracle autism cure' as cops launch fraud probe