Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan, Brendan Smith has called for adequate measures to be in place to minimise disruption to trade in light of new controls that come into place from 1 April 2021 following Brexit. 

Deputy Brendan Smith commented, “There needs to be ongoing engagement across Departments and statutory agencies with businesses and with the authorities in Northern Ireland in relation to the new controls on trading that will come into effect from 1 April 2021 following Brexit. 

“I have asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if there will be adequate measures in place to minimise disruption to trade. It is vital that the long and economically important Irish/British trading relationship is maintained during this ongoing transition period.” 

From 1 April, the UK will begin to apply documentary controls to the import into the UK of a much wider range of products, including food and agricultural produce.  The new UK controls will impact on exporters of all products of animal origin, including all meat, dairy, fish and composite products incorporating products of animal origin, as well as regulated plants and plant products.   

These changes will also apply to such goods moving via the UK landbridge. In addition, from 1 April, the UK will no longer provide for the import from the EU of fresh meat preparations such as mincemeat and sausages, unless frozen. 

These changes mean that, on top of the existing customs formalities, Irish exporters exporting to or through Great Britain, will need to comply with a number of new UK requirements from 1 April including pre-notification to the UK authorities and obtaining the appropriate Health Certificate(s) from the Irish authorities. The Protocol on Ireland / Northern Ireland means that no new checks and controls apply to trade between the EU, including Ireland, and Northern Ireland.