Brussels was “preparing for the worst” on Brexit today, as the UK signaled that the EU’s offer to eliminate up to 80 percent of checks on goods entering Northern Ireland was to resolve a bitter dispute over the Irish border. was not enough.
EU Vice-President Maros Sefkovic called on London to engage “sincerely and deeply” with the proposals, inviting Brexit Minister David Frost for a renewed dialogue on the Northern Ireland Protocol from Friday.
But the UK said that, while Lord Frost will look “seriously and constructively” on the EU package, talks in the coming weeks should also focus on his demand to remove the European Court of Justice’s jurisdiction over the deal.
A British source told Granthshala: “Without the new regime on governance the Protocol will never get the support it needs to survive. This is a fundamental issue that needs to be addressed if the Protocol is to be put in place on a sustainable basis.”
The scene was set for a Christmas showdown, with observers unsure whether Mr. Sefkovic’s initiative had provided enough “tingling room” for Frost and Johnson to back down from their staunch stance.
UK businesses meanwhile urged Boris Johnson to step back from the brink, warning that his threat to tear down the protocol could trigger punitive tariffs on British products, including 10 per cent on car exports to the EU.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /