Post-Brexit checks on goods between Britain and Northern Ireland set to end under new plans

Business

The UK government is tabling legislation to end post-Brexit checks on goods moving between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Significantly, the Withdrawal Act will also be amended, meaning EU law will no longer apply automatically in Northern Ireland.

The details are contained in a government document which effectively details the deal to restore power-sharing at Stormont.

The 80-page document comes in three parts: one setting out changes to the law and their impact, an annex on the constitutional context, and a second annex on additional measures to strengthen Northern Ireland’s place in the UK.

Those measures include an East-West Council, a new trade body and one UK cabinet meeting in Northern Ireland annually.

The changes will have an impact on the Windsor Framework, the deal Rishi Sunak did with the European Union.

But sources close to negotiations say they “will come as no surprise” to Brussels, which has been kept informed.

Words like “flexibility” and “pragmatism” are being used a lot by players on all side, “conversations have produced trust.”

The legal changes reflect what has been described as “the democratic deficit”, giving Stormont a greater role in scrutiny.

That strengthens the DUP’s argument for a restoration of the power-sharing government at the heart of the peace process.

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