Tue, Jan 31, 2023 @ 17:10 GMT
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EU to insist no time limit on Irish border backstop, just pledge to work on a EU-UK deal

European Union Budget Commissioner Guenther Oettinger reiterated the commission’s stance on Brexit negotiation. That is, ” final clarification yes, but further negotiations no”. Oettinger went further and emphasized that there won’t be a time limit for the backstop solution on Irish border. He added “that doesn’t work. We need to have clear rules for people, products and goods at the border of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Belfast and Dublin.”

Separately, it’s reported the EU is ready to provide further assurance regarding the backstop. Reuters reported after seeing a six-point document for today’s summit. The assurance would include that “The European Council underlines that the backstop does not represent a desirable outcome for the Union. The backstop is only intended as an insurance policy … It is the Union’s firm determination to work speedily on a subsequent agreement.”

And even if triggered EU would say the backstop would “apply only temporarily unless and until it is superseded by a subsequent agreement.” EU would also commit to “best endeavours” to agree on a new EU-UK deal if the backstop is triggered “so that it would only be in place for a short period and only as long as strictly necessary.”

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