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Politics & Law Series: Expert Comment

Professor Panos Koutrakos chairs webinar on Trade with Northern Ireland under the Withdrawal Agreement

The online event brings together eminent lawyers, academics, and trade specialists.
by City Press Office (General enquiries)

292815Professor of EU Law and Jean Monnet Professor of EU Law in The City Law School, Professor Panos Koutrakos, chaired a webinar on 16th July 2020, titled “Trade with Northern Ireland under the Withdrawal Agreement: Legal and Policy Issues”.

The webinar featured Timothy Lyons QC BL (39 Essex Chambers); Dr Katy Hayward (Queen’s University Belfast and UK in a Changing Europe); Dr Anna Jerzewska (UK Trade Policy Observatory), and Dr Vincent Power (Partner at A&L Goodbody, Dublin).

In view of the Withdrawal Agreement’s complex provisions on trade with Northern Ireland and preparations for the application of such provisions within a sensitive policy context, the discussants dealt with the legal and policy implications for the UK, the EU, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Professor Koutrakos said:

There are three main threads that brought together the presentations by our speakers. The first is the considerable complexity of trade arrangements with Northern Ireland: working out what the relevant rules entail and introducing the appropriate procedures and practices will test policy makers, lawyers, and businesses. The second thread is uncertainty: even though the expiry of the transition period is fast approaching, businesses still do not feel confident which rules they would need to follow and wait for detailed guidance. Finally, there is concern that the new trade arrangements with Northern Ireland would have repercussions both in political terms and for the functioning of the UK internal market.

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