Written answers

Thursday, 6 May 2021

Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine

Common Agricultural Policy

Photo of Brendan SmithBrendan Smith (Cavan-Monaghan, Fianna Fail)
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261. To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine further to Parliamentary Question No. 261 of 25 March 2021, if there have been recent discussions with the European Commission in relation to the issues raised; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23565/21]

Photo of Charlie McConalogueCharlie McConalogue (Donegal, Fianna Fail)
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There are a range of meetings and discussions ongoing between the European Union and the United Kingdom in terms of implementing the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland, in addition to technical meetings between DG SANTE, the EU Commission department responsible for EU policy on food safety and health and for monitoring the implementation of related laws, and the United Kingdom. Furthermore, the co-Chairs of the Specialised Committee on the implementation of the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland are conducting joint outreach programmes with businesses and civic society more broadly in Northern Ireland.

These discussions are in the context of implementing the Protocol. The Protocol must be implemented, fully and sensitively. Full implementation of the Protocol is the agreed way to safeguard the Good Friday Agreement, to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland and to protect the Single Market and Ireland’s place in it. Intensive engagement between the EU and the UK on implementation, and joint outreach to NI stakeholders will assist with that and is something to be welcomed.

However, it is important to be clear that none of these discussions involve re-negotiating or amending the Protocol. The situation with respect to market support measures for products originating in Northern Ireland remains as previously set out.


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