Michael Gove has this afternoon announced that agreement in principle has been reached between the co-chairs of the EU-UK Joint Committee on implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement – himself and Maroš Šefčovič. This agreement means the controversial clauses in the Internal Market Bill have be ditched for good.
“An agreement in principle has been found in the following areas, amongst others: Border Control Posts/Entry Points specifically for checks on animals, plants and derived products, export declarations, the supply of medicines, the supply of chilled meats, and other food products to supermarkets, and a clarification on the application of State aid under the terms of the Protocol.”
“In view of these mutually agreed solutions, the UK will withdraw clauses 44, 45 and 47 of the UK Internal Market Bill, and not introduce any similar provisions in the Taxation Bill.”
The controversial clauses were written in to the Internal Market Bill to give the UK a power of last resort in case the EU took advantage of the Joint Committee process and disrupted inter-UK trade. The UK was concerned the EU would threaten to blockade the movement of food and other goods within the UK’s internal market. Now it appears the EU has formally committed to not do that. Euro Guido awaits to see the text of the agreement…
UPDATE: A UK Government source tells Guido “Maroš Šefčovič and his team were constructive and pragmatic. We are pleased that we have reached agreement in principle on a package to apply in all circumstances that will protect Northern Ireland’s place in the U.K’s customs territory, uphold the peace process and give certainty to people and businesses in Northern Ireland”