At a Glance: What Johnson’s Brexit Will Do for the Irish Border

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(Bloomberg) -- Following is a summary of the protocol on Northern Ireland that forms part of the U.K. and European Union’s Brexit deal. You can read the full document here.

  • Northern Ireland will be part of the U.K. customs union, and free to benefit from any trade agreements the U.K. reaches with other countries. It will follow the single market’s rules in a number of areas to avoid a hard border.
  • No duties will be paid on goods brought into Northern Ireland from another part of the U.K. -- unless that good is at risk of subsequently being moved into the EU or being processed into a good that will be.
  • U.K. residents will pay no duties on personal property brought into Northern Ireland from another part of the U.K. Nor will levies be made on goods contained in travelers’ personal baggage.
  • The U.K. will be responsible for collecting VAT and excise duties -- but the EU’s VAT rules will continue to to apply. Tax exemptions and reduced rates applied in Ireland may also be applied in Northern Ireland in order to avoid distorting the level playing field on the island.
At a Glance: What Johnson’s Brexit Will Do for the Irish Border
  • North-South cooperation will be continued in the areas of: environment, health, agriculture, transport, education and tourism, as well as in the areas of energy, telecommunications, broadcasting, inland fisheries, justice and security, higher education and sport.
  • If the application of the Protocol leads to serious economic, societal or environmental difficulties that are liable to persist, or to diversion of trade, the EU or U.K. may unilaterally take appropriate safeguard measures.
  • Four years after the end of the transition period, the Northern Ireland Assembly will vote on whether to stop or continue applying EU law. (If they vote against, the Protocol would cease to apply after a two-year grace period.) Every four years thereafter, the Assembly could vote again. If the vote gathers support from both nationalists and unionists, the next vote could only be held eight years later.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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