Leaked Brexit document increases need for step up in Govt. preparations – Smith



Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan, Brendan Smith, says the government should step up their preparations for all Brexit eventualities.

The Border Region TD made the call as the prospect of a no deal Brexit becomes increasingly likely as leaked British Government papers documented a plan for a worse case no deal scenario.

Deputy Smith commented, “This leaked document merely backs up all of the warnings that Ireland has been outlining about the fallout from a no-deal Brexit. Most serious of these is the possibility of a return of a border on the island of Ireland. This is something we cannot return to. Living in the Border Region, we pass through the border numerous times a day with ease.

“A no deal Brexit would be catastrophic for the island of Ireland – this document catalogues a sector by sector impact on the UK, but there will also huge implications for these areas in Ireland. Given the makeup of the North’s economy, structured around the SME and agri-food sector, and the very tight supply chains linking North-South and East-West the effects of a no deal Brexit would be severe and damaging.

“Over the past three years we have been appealing to all sides to adopt a logical and reasonable approach and yet we find ourselves facing the prospect of a major economic and social catastrophe in just over two months’ time, therefore, despite the leaking of such a detailed and hard-hitting document, we should not expect the UK government to change its approach given the determination it has shown in recent weeks to leave the EU at any cost.

“The government here must step up its preparations for a no deal Brexit. It has been evident since March that Ministers have taken their foot off the pedal in terms of preparations for all Brexit outcomes and we are now playing catch up.

“There needs to be a greater sense of urgency from the government as well as more transparency about our level of preparedness for all Brexit eventualities. The October deadline is drawing closer but there is a real absence of information about where we are in terms of readiness for a no-deal outcome,” concluded Deputy Smith.