David Trimble, one of the Good Friday Agreement architects, argued that the story of the “whole island” economy across Ireland brought about “destabilizing effects” and “sharp” fears for union members.

Former UUP leader Trimble argues in a statement last night that the concept of Ireland’s “whole island” economy is “fiction” and “an illusion promoted for political purposes.”

This study, which highlights the economic differences between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, was created by Dr. Graham Gaddin, Chief Economic Advisor of the London-based think tank Policy Exchange.

Dr. Gudgin was a special adviser to Mr. Trimble, the first Minister of Northern Ireland from 1998 to 2002.

In his report, Dr. Gudgin said in his report that the economies of the two regions were distinguished and mostly integrated, despite decades of relative peace since the Good Friday Agreement was signed in 1998. Claims not.

He argues that the difference between the two economies “weakens the drift to Ireland’s unification.”

Dr. Gudgin also argues that the Northern Ireland Protocol is “not politically stable and unlikely to survive in its current form.”

In Brexit, the EU and the United Kingdom have launched the Northern Ireland Protocol. This is an international treaty that guarantees that Northern Ireland will continue to trade seamlessly between Ireland and Northern Ireland after Brexit, even though it is no longer part of the EU.

It also meant customs inspection of goods moving from the UK to Northern Ireland.

Despite agreeing to the Protocol, the UK Government now wants to renegotiate the Protocol and even shred it completely.

David Frost, who resigned as Britain’s chief negotiator with the EU in the Northern Ireland Protocol last December, also argued in a report that the emergence of the concept of an “all-island” economy fits the political needs of the EU and Ireland. I am.

“From their point of view, the logic was clear,” Frost said. “Following the Good Friday Agreement, Northern Ireland will be within the framework of EU regulation if they can accept that the newly opened borders have created significant economic integration, which was potentially confused by Brexit. It will be easier to maintain. “

In his report, Dr. Gudgin states that only 4pc of goods and services produced in Northern Ireland go across the border to the Republic and 16pc go to the United Kingdom.

But Northern Ireland’s economy is not as international as the Republic.

According to the Northern Ireland Bureau of Statistics, of the total sales of goods and services generated within the Northern Ireland economy in 2020 of £ 67.1 billion (€ 78.1 billion), only £ 10.3 billion are exported outside the United Kingdom. .. Meanwhile, Northern Ireland’s annual sales to the United Kingdom amount to £ 10.9 billion.

Of the exports of goods and services outside the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland is by far the most important market for Northern Ireland, accounting for £ 4.1 billion of the £ 10.3 billion figure.

Ireland’s total exports of goods and services reached a record high of € 451 billion last year. Exports of goods to the United Kingdom amounted to € 14.4 billion, while Northern Ireland accounted for € 3.7 billion of exports of goods.

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