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Mark Drakeford ‘baffled’ by UK Government complaints about Brexit deal

15 Oct 2021 3 minutes Read
First Minister Mark Drakeford. Picture by the Welsh Government.

Mark Drakeford has said he’s “baffled” by the UK Government’s complaints about the Brexit deal with the EU.

Ministers from the Conservative government in Westminster says they are unhappy about the Northern Ireland Protocol, which was signed as part of the deal.

The First Minister pointed out that this “is the deal that they themselves signed up to”, and suggested that “UK Government ministers talk as if the deal was entirely somebody else’s responsibility”.

He said: “I don’t think it’s helpful when UK ministers make hardline speeches, drawing red lines, criticising the deal that they themselves had signed.”

The Northern Ireland Protocol, was created to stop checks along the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

It keeps Northern Ireland in the EU’s single market for goods, and this has created a new trade border with Great Britain.

The UK Government, which championed the deal at the time, is arguing the current arrangement imposes too many barriers on trade.

It is demanding to fundamentally change the protocol by removing the European Court of Justice (ECJ) from an oversight role. The EU is refusing to budge on this issue, but it has proposed amendments to the protocol that would reduce checks on goods and paperwork.

‘Frankly’ 

During an interview with Sky News, Mark Drakeford said: “Now I am frankly baffled by some of the things we hear from the UK Government. The deal is the deal that they themselves signed up to. It is their deal.

“Yet so often we hear UK Government ministers talk as if the deal was entirely somebody else’s responsibility. Now I met the EU Ambassador to the United Kingdom yesterday. I agree that the announcements they make do genuinely show practical attempts to deal with the problems there have been at the border.”

According Leo Varadkar, the Tánaiste of the Government of Ireland, the protocol means that Northern Ireland is facing far less issues in terms of shortages than the rest of the UK. He pointed to shortages of goods on shelves in Wales as well as petrol stations being closed.

He said: “One thing I would say while people are pointing out some of the difficulties that the protocol may have in terms of getting goods from Britain into Northern Ireland.

“Look at the trouble Britain has had getting goods into Britain, you know real shortages in England, now in Scotland and Wales, ranging from petrol stations being closed to shelves not having goods on them because of Brexit, and actually the protocol has protected Northern Ireland from that.

“It has fewer supply issues than the rest of the United Kingdom.”

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j humphrys
j humphrys
1 month ago

I can tell you, the general feeling in Europe is “Oh, not them again, thought they’d gone!”

Ed Jones
Ed Jones
1 month ago

Da iawn Mark a diolch.

Stuart Cane
Stuart Cane
1 month ago

Involvement of the ECJ is a clear clause of the deal that Britain signed up to, not an issue of interpretation or implementation of the text by the EU. By trying to back away from the fundamentals of the protocol, the UK government are sending a clear sign to the rest of the world that any deal that they sign with us in good faith isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.

Grayham Jones
1 month ago

We in wales was getting £550
Million pounds from the EU now we are getting only £250 million pounds from the English government all that money 💰 was being spent in the valleys and it was the valleys people that voted us out because they was listening to the English 📺 Tv and English newspapers we in wales have got to stop being little Englanders and be proud to be welsh start fighting for your children and grandchildren future in wales it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Nicky Vitiello
Nicky Vitiello
1 month ago
Reply to  Grayham Jones

They were the proverbial turkeys voting for Christmas

Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

Dominic Cummings, backed up by Ian Paisley jr of the DUP, have both said this week , the UK Gov agreed the deal, knowing it would ignore it once implemented, and pick and chose what it wanted to honour. And some in our country thought we would thrive outside the EU under the rule of these liars.

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago

The Tories signed the deal without reading it out of political expediency lying to the British public that it’s all done and dusted in order to win the 2019 GE. Recent UK gov. action is pure EU hatred why target the ECJ, it has to have jurisdiction as NI is still technically in the Single Market? The protocol is working and with the EU concessions announced this week trade should move quicker, why create a potential trade war where everyone suffers?

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve Duggan
Erisian
Erisian
1 month ago

It is greatly to his credit that he kept a straight face and didn’t snigger once, which is hell of a lot more than I could have done, and the word ‘baffled’ was so gentle and kind.
What a nice man.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

The Conservative Brexit negotiations is akin to the Wile E. Coyte in those Looney Tunes cartoons who find themselves perched on cliff edge only to use a hammer & chisel to cut away the very ledge that they standing on.. 🥴🇬🇧

Stephen Owen
Stephen Owen
1 month ago

The UK government said it was “oven-ready” and signed it, so how can they complain about it now?

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