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Progress on the Irish border issue will require both sides to start talking trade

In a speech last week, the Irish Taoiseach emphasised the need to establish what UK-EU trade will look like post-Brexit.  Open Europe’s Aarti Shankar argues that until trade is discussed, little more progress can be made on the question of the Irish border.

Until the intended purpose of the Irish border post-Brexit is clear, little headway can be made on how it should be designed.  If the UK and EU establish a comprehensive free trade with agreements for customs facilitation and mutual recognition of product standards and regulations, then the border’s function will be largely limited to ensuring revenue collection.  This would require least change and, arguably, no infrastructure at the border.

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