BREXIT: The Importance of the Irish Backstop Explained
When the United Kingdom leaves the EU there is a potential issue with the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland will be part of the UK and Ireland will be part of the EU. The issue is the land border between the two. Currently, both people and goods can move freely from Ireland to Northern Ireland and back, but after Brexit this is no longer possible.
The Issue Explained
In this article, Euronews explains why the Irish Backstop is so important. The reasons are not strictly economic, or customs-related, but also historic.
People cross the 499-kilometre frontier between Ireland and Northern Ireland every day.
Northern Ireland’s Department for the Economy estimated in a September 2018 report based on mobile phone data that there are approximately 105 million border crossings per year.
An estimated 72 million vehicles cross per year, according to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency.
In May 2019, the Republic of Ireland sold €169 million worth of goods to Northern Ireland, according to the Rep. of Ireland’s Central Statistics Office. Ireland imported €123 million worth of goods from Northern Ireland that same month.