SDLP Mid Ulster MLA Patsy McGlone has said the British government’s Protocol legislation would put livelihoods in the North at risk.
He was speaking after the NI Dairy Council said the Protocol was working for the industry, and urged the government against changes to the current trade rules.
Mr McGlone said the performance of the North’s economy post-Brexit was proof that the Protocol was working for businesses here.
Mid Ulster MLA Mr McGlone said, “The act of economic self-harm the British government is planning to inflict on the North will have a huge impact on people’s livelihoods and put the prosperity of many businesses at serious risk. We have heard from the NI Dairy Council and countless others about the benefits they receive as a direct result of the Protocol and they are deeply concerned about the impact this legislation will have.
“This British government has proved time and time again that they have no interest in the North or what’s best for people here, they only wish to use this place as a pawn to shore up their own faltering political futures. Boris Johnson may soon be gone – he cannot be allowed to take this new-found economic opportunity for the North with him.
“We are not deaf to the concerns unionists have with the Protocol, but these problems will not be solved by the DUP’s boycott, only by constructive negotiations between the government and the EU to resolve the small number of outstanding issues. We didn’t want Brexit, we voted against it and the Protocol is necessary to protect us from its worst aspects. The best thing for the North is for an agreement to be reached, our institutions to get up and running again and these economic opportunities exploited to their fullest to benefit people here.”