NICVA joins joint EU-UK call for constructive dialogue to resolve issues including NI protocol
The EU and UK Domestic Advisory Groups (DAGs) established post-Brexit to discuss future EU-UK co-operation and the implementation of the UK-EU Trade and Co-operation Agreement (TCA) met on Monday in Brussels and online. Following positive discussions, the two Domestic Advisory Groups agreed and issued the following joint statement which was also presented the following day to the first meeting of the post-Brexit UK Civil Society Forum, at which NICVA was also represented. The joint statement highlights the importance of future collaboration between civil society in the UK and the EU and in particular of resolving any practical issues with the Ireland/Northern Ireland protocol through good faith discussions in order to protect peace, jobs and prosperity for all.
EU and UK Domestic Advisory Groups to the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement
We, the Domestic Advisory Groups of the European Union and of the United Kingdom, having met on Monday, October 3, 2022, in Brussels and in advance of participating in the first Civil Society Forum to be hosted by the European Union on Tuesday, October 4, jointly state that:
Collaboration between civil society organisations in the EU and the UK is vital as we share common goals to ensure the EU and UK work towards a more stable, positive, forward looking and rule-based relationship.
In view of the urgency of the climate and biodiversity crises and the common geopolitical and economic challenges, the two parties should value and build upon what they have in common, while maintaining an open and constructive dialogue over issues and differences.
The Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) between the UK and EU tasks the Domestic Advisory Groups (DAGs) with monitoring the parties’ commitments and the implementation of the agreement as a whole. We aim for a constructive collaboration on areas of mutual interest and concerns, starting from a regular exchange between our DAG presidencies.
We believe that ensuring a Level Playing Field between the UK and EU is crucial to ensure fair competition and protect workers, businesses and citizens. We expect the TCA to support a positive and constructive framework of rights and standards. In order to achieve this, it is essential to promote cooperation between regulators on both sides.
We call upon both parties to engage closely with us, adopt a broad and constructive approach towards inputs provided by both DAGs and give a timely follow-up to our recommendations.
We are convinced the TCA can be a sound basis to build a stronger, more resilient and sustainable relationship with close trade, investment and cultural ties, fair competition, the respect of human rights, and high social, environmental, animal welfare and consumer protection standards for the benefit of EU and UK citizens.
We emphasize the importance of the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland to the TCA and the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement to be respected in all their dimensions. We call on both parties to address any practical issues with the Protocol through good faith discussions that should lead to a mutually agreed solution as soon as possible that protects peace, jobs, and provides prosperity for all.
Brussels, 3 October 2022
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