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Statement from HM Government, ("Chequers proposal"), 6 July 2018, 3 pp.

This document is not a draft treaty, draft A50 settlement agreement(contract), or even another premature "future partnership" (trade) positioning paper. It is a Conservative Party "manifesto" (May's unfortunate term) addressed to party members. More important is explanatory information about customs controls that obviate any need for observing antiquated notions of literal, physical border patrol.

d. The UK and EU would work together on the phased introduction of Facilitated Customs Arrangement that would remove the need for customs checks and controls between the UK and EU as if a combined customs territory. The UK would apply the UK's tariffs and trad policy for goods intended for the UK, and EI's tariffs and trade policy for goods intended for the EU -- becoming operational in stages as both sides complete the necessary preparations. This would enable the UK to control its own tariffs for trade with the rest of the world and ensure business paid the right or no tariff - in the vast majority of cases upfront,and otherwise through a repayment mechanism.
[emphasis in original]

To be charitable, this information does not endorse either "special" EU zoning for NI or dissolution of the UK union. (Nor smuggling --customs evasion-- which most certainly will occur as always.) It endorses port control of goods entering and exiting the both jurisdictions. That is not news or a fantastic breach of UK sovereignty. May acknowledges application to "world" trade customs surveillance and tariff collections.

Buy or Build 'Hi-Tech'
The equipment already exists. Manufacturers already apply RFID, UPC, and EAN scannable ID to variable weight merchandise and livestock. Use of this technology is ubiquitous. Objection to merging commercial and public data sets in order to utilize this technology at ports --whether perfected or not at launch-- is bogus. EU has indicated, comically, it doesn't care as long as UK commits to the A50 agreement.

In Either Case
This document conveys no legal effect on the EU gov. Let's not dramatise--as British and Irish press do-- that it does or that its content is comparable to negotiable terms of any A50 conclusory agreement or that is represents a counter offer.

The conclusion of this story is not complicated.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Sep 23rd, 2018 at 10:25:36 PM EST
I'm not sure we're disagreeing on anything here. Whatever future trading relationship is agreed, it will not be agreed until the transition agreement after completion of the Brexit Treaty.

There are a number of reasons why the EU (as well as many in the UK) reject the Chequers proposals, but that simply isn't the problem right now, which is to conclude a Brexit deal including a legally operable backstop guarantee that no future arrangements will be entered into which would require a hard customs border within Ireland.

Precisely how that will be achieved can be a matter for another day. May says that it is now up to the EU to produce a working alternative to her Chequers proposals. That can be done in due course, but won't be included in the Brexit Treaty in any case.

But if she wants a Brexit deal to create that opportunity, she must first agree the backstop. And if she doesn't like the EU draft, it is up to her to come up with a better one.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Sep 23rd, 2018 at 10:47:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Chequers is a red herring. But there's no mystery here.

The EU did not reject the "Chequers proposal", because it is not a declaration of regulatory procedures in itself (the "backstop" expected). It's a Tory "manifesto" and articulates a profoundly devious political posture to the problem of UK-EU port customs controls. Because Tory gov's latest pretext for caring about the GFA, a semblance of an actual "backstop" proposal was delivered the month before.

Technical note: temporary customs arrangement, 6 June

Wherein Tory gov demands tariff-free trade for the whole UK, rejects custom control of any sort, and requires liberty to enter FTAs with rest-of-world.

The tech solution is the EU's effort to develop one of Tory gov's  dodges from last year. Only god knows what tripe May slipped Macron in August.

Anyone should see why Tory members rejected the "Chequers proposal". May had the nerve to convey from EU a joint EU-UK custom controls on the Big Island and NI. Also they're assholes.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Mon Sep 24th, 2018 at 12:09:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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