Region Archives: EU

Trade & Brexit: Where next?

The New BrexitSec

Among the changes in Prime Minister May’s post-referendum reshuffle David Davis has now been appointed new ‘Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union’ or BrexitSec as I’m growing used to calling him. He caused a bit of a stir last Monday when he appeared not to know that the Republic of Ireland was no more…

Immigration less of a problem, trade and customs more so, as Liam Fox rules out a customs Union with the EU. But Theresa and Enda think they see how to keep the border open

One of the leading authorities on EU affairs Charles Grant, the director of the centre for European Reform has issued  this warning: When it comes to economic ties, the 27 will be much tougher than many Britons expect. European leaders have an interest in ensuring that the EU maintains a close economic relationship with the more…

O’Leary’s Dalriada proposal keeps Northern Ireland and Scotland in the UK and the EU

The political scientist Professor Brendan O’Leary is one of the strongest supporters of power sharing in Northern Ireland and an deviser of political solutions to ethnic conflict throughout the world. On leave from Pennsylvania University and an old boy of St Macnissi’s Garron Tower, he has produced the Dalriada Document – inspired by the ancient more…

Faint hopes only for a second Brexit referendum

Jeremy Corbyn’s challenger Owen Smith (once the smooth and effective special adviser to  Secretary of State Paul Murphy) has offered a second referendum or a general election to ratify any Brexit deal.  What, you hadn’t noticed? His offer has so far been buried in the controversy over the leadership challenge. Let’s see how it plays more…

Remain campaign a victim of it’s own left liberal conceits?

A couple of thoughtful pieces to throw into the melee post-referendum. First Tim Harford in today’s FT… Here are four tenets of the trendy centre-left of British politics: first, soaring inequality means that ordinary people haven’t shared in the benefits of economic growth; second, rich people and big companies don’t pay taxes; third, gross domestic more…

Calm down, dears…

Wilful or otherwise, there’s been a degree of misrepresentation of Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s apparently unscripted, and qualified, comments at the MacGill Summer School yesterday – you can read the official version of his speech here. As the initial reported quote demonstrated, his focus was not on preparing for the prospect of referendums on a united more…

Are the Dublin party leaders serious about raising Unity in the Brexit negotiations or are they playing Dail politics?

So Enda has taken the lead from Micheal who took his cue from Martin and inserted musing about a future border poll into his speech at Glenties.  For such a fateful topic  the whole sequence  has been deplorably improvised. The qualifications about lack of present evidence won’t stop the hare running now.  A border poll more…

In Brexit dialogues the DUP must be included. The Good Friday Agreement requires it.

Sadly, the Sunday Politics programmes have registered no closing of the gap between the DUP and Sinn Fein over “Brexit means Brexit.”  Inevitably there is a real danger that narrow politics and positioning will confuse already very difficult issues.  But at least they  are not the ones aggravating the disagreement at  the moment. They appear more…

Appointment of James Brokenshire represents a serious upgrade to the NIO…

Jmes Brokenshire

There have been jokes on the internet about how his name is appropriate for a place like Northern Ireland. But, with no personal slight intended, James Brokenshire is a senior upgrade from Villiers and a reflection of the fact that North-South relations will take on a heightened importance in upcoming Brexit negotiations. May’s right-hand man more…

Could the Danish model be applied to the UK?

Logo_brexit_new_size2

Nationalist leaders have been wandering around trying to find possible ways to keep Northern Ireland within the European Union. There has also been considerable debate about an all island forum to examine possibilities. If we are going to look at something, Denmark might offer something for the UK and the Irish government to consider. Ulrik more…

US Consulate: “We anticipate that a US trade and investment delegation will visit Northern Ireland in the first half of 2017”

The Northern Ireland Secretary of State, Theresa Villiers, has, in effect, called ‘bullshit’ on Martin McGuinness‘ claim that a proposed US investment delegation to Northern Ireland has been postponed “directly as a result of the vote” in the UK-wide EU membership referendum. Unlike the Northern Ireland deputy First Minister, echoed by his party colleague, Conor Murphy, more…

Wales now experiencing a mild dose of ‘buyer’s regret’?

Fascinating results from the Welsh Political Barometer poll. I doubt it was the taunting by Northern Ireland fans… More likely a post ref reminder that large parts of the post-industrial economy in Wales is sustained by EU structural funds now hang by a wafer thin Tory (neo-Thatcherite?) thread. Or just plain old morning after blues. Here’s the headline figures: Remain: more…

So what comes after Farage for UKIP? Labour’s northern base?

farage smoking

So he’s gone [Has he? Really? Gone, I mean? Like for good? – Ed] Who knows. But for now, Nigel Farage is planning to edge out the rest of his free Belgian beer time in his job quietly in Brussels. What comes after that? Well, the Telegraph is pitching Paul Nuttall and Steven Woolfe, two working more…