Thursday, 7 February 2019
Department of Finance
The EU and Ireland have said that we are determined to do all we can, deal or no deal, to avoid the need for a border and to protect the peace process. In a no deal, Ireland, the EU and the UK would need to work together to achieve this. But it is preferable for us all to resolve this now, as set out in the Withdrawal Agreement.
I am informed by Revenue that their preparations do not include any plans for infrastructure at the border and this is in line with the Government’s position that there will be no hard border on the island of Ireland. Revenue Chairman, Niall Cody, set out this position clearly when he and Revenue officials appeared before the Joint Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach on 24 January 2019.
The Government has made it clear that it is committed to avoiding the return of a hard border on the Island of Ireland. In the event of no deal, then there will be intensive discussions between the Government, the EU Commission and EU partners regarding the movement of goods North-South. I am assured by Revenue that they will provide whatever technical expertise and assistance is required by the Government.