Home U.K Brexit LIVE: Rip it up! Infuriating EU rules preventing medicine from reaching...

Brexit LIVE: Rip it up! Infuriating EU rules preventing medicine from reaching UK soil


As a result of Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal, checks are being imposed on trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK. Northern Irish health minister Robin Swann, an Ulster Unionist, has warned this could interfere with the arrival of medicine.

He also attacked the EU’s threat to trigger Article 16, suspending the Northern Ireland protocol, in January, which he said set pharmaceutical alarm bells ringing.

Some 98 percent of Northern Ireland’s medicine and medical equipment comes via Great Britain.

Mr Swann commented: “It is something that concerns me, that’s why we have been engaged quite significantly in regards to this.

“The derogation period for medicines was one of the longest that was actually agreed at the start, which gave us to the end of this year actually to get things sorted out and in a better place.

“Everyone thought that work was progressing well until the EU triggered Article 16 over vaccines.

“That unnerved people, that unsettled people and that has, I suppose, increased the level of concern we are seeing, especially from the smaller, the more intricate suppliers of medicines and medical devices.”

Unionists are furious about the new checks which they argue undermine Northern Ireland’s position within the UK.

Earlier this month loyalist rioting across the province was partially attributed to this anger.

Had the EU’s threat to suspend the Northern Irish protocol gone ahead in January it would have resulted in border checks between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

The move was scrapped following outrage in Dublin, London and Belfast.



8.32am update: Take that, Brussels! Brexit row over EU shellfish export ban set to END as waters upgraded

Hope is on the horizon for UK shellfish fishermen who will be able to export their goods to the EU following a ban.

The ban announced by the European Commission prevents scallops, clams, cockles, oysters and mussels known as bivalve molluscs from being exported to the bloc unless they are ready for human consumption after being purified. 

In a review, the Independent Food Standards Agency said it would upgrade 11 out of 266 sea areas to class A waters.

8.15am update: Australia ‘keen to put real momentum’ in post-Brexit deal talks ‘Considerable progress!’

Australia’s Trade Minister Dan Tehan insisted “considerable progress” has been made during talks with Liz Truss to seal a comprehensive post-Brexit trade deal agreement with the UK.

The Australian representative met with International Trade Secretary Liz Truss on Thursday to continue negotiations for a new post-Brexit trade deal between Australia and UK.

Mr Tehan dismissed concerns about the length of the talks, insisting negotiations are proceeding towards a “liberalising” agreement between the two nations.

Speaking to the Today programme, the Australian politician said: “Liz gave me a very warm welcome and we had very fruitful discussions.


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