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05 February 2019

Practical alternatives must come forward soon

Following the Prime Minister Theresa May’s speech in Belfast, FSB NI Policy Chair, Tina McKenzie welcomed the Prime Minister’s commitment to avoiding a hard border on the island of Ireland, however she said that alternative arrangements must come forward soon.

Commenting, Tina McKenzie said:

“It was welcome to hear the Prime Minister reaffirm her commitment to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland and work for a deal which serves all the people of Northern Ireland.

“However, with Brexit Day fast approaching, we need to see practical alternatives on the table soon, if changes are to be made to the withdrawal agreement.

“While business is pragmatic about the means used to achieve an open border, it is paramount that frictionless trade can continue throughout these islands.

“Only 1 in 7 small businesses have planned for a no-deal outcome, which could impact supply chains and severely restrict access to markets.

“It is therefore crucial that politicians work in a pragmatic way to reach agreement soon, so business can have some certainty and a cliff-edge Brexit can be avoided.”