British Prime Minister Boris Johnson emphasised his commitment to securing a Brexit deal that respects the sovereignty of the UK while speaking with Irish Taoiseach Micheal Martin on Friday evening phone call.
As the Brexit transition period gradually comes to an end on December 31, the UK will exit the EU one market with or without a trade deal between Britain and the European Union. But concerns are rising over negotiations in respect of customs deals between Northern Ireland and the Republic.
Mr Johnson, last night during a phone call held crucial talks with the Irish Taoiseach to discuss the progress in the UK-EU post-Brexit trade negotiations.
Mr Johnson’s spokesperson said, “The Prime Minister underlined his commitment to reaching a deal that respects the sovereignty of the UK. The leaders also reaffirmed the need to prioritise the Good Friday Agreement and avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland.”
The meeting between Mr Johnson and Mr Martin comes only a few days after Mr Martin warned businesses to get ready for change and ruled out any possibility of a grace period for business after the transition period ends.
“The bottom line is you need to get ready. That concern has been shared with me this morning in terms of preparation and readiness. There is still time for people to get ready. The deadline is January 1 because the UK will be outside of the customs union and outside of the single market.
“That’s the bottom line. It will be a third country in the context of the European Union. People just need to knuckle down now. If you work with the State agencies you will get a lot of assistance.”
The issue of a hard border between the Republic and Northern Ireland has sparked concern across the Atlantic, with Joe Biden opening up on the importance of maintaining an open border between the two nations following the end of the transition period.
While speaking to reporters in Wilmington, Delaware, Mr Biden said, “We do not want a guarded border. We want to make sure we work too hard to get Ireland worked out. I’ve talked with the British prime minister; I’ve talked with the Taoiseach; I’ve talked with others and I’ve talked with the French.
“The idea of having the border north and south once again being closed, it’s just not right. We’ve just got to keep the border open,” said Mr Biden who has previously said there would be no UK-US trade deal if Britain violates the terms of the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement.
In September Mr Biden said, “Any trade deal between the US and UK must be contingent upon respect for the agreement and preventing the return of a hard border. Period.”
Note: US has not officially called the 2020 US election in favour of Joe Biden as yet, although some states legally certified votes put him ahead of his opponent President Donald Trump, SurgeZirc UK will not refer to him as president-elect until he is declared the victor of the entire process “legally”, not by mainstream media.