No hard Irish border ever required - UK Customs agreed with Irish Customs in 2017
“No border infrastructure needed between N.I. and Ireland under any circumstances” – Head of HMRC
© Facts4EU.Org 2021
UK Parliament was told in 2017 by HMRC it was prevented from agreeing N.I. border solution with Irish colleagues
Informing the World about the EU's vindictive 'Northern Ireland Protocol'Part Four of a series of reports demonstrating the EU's true nature
The full series:-
Part One - The Protocol itself | Part Two - How the EU has threatened peace | Part Three - Irish Customs overruled by EU | Part Four - UK Customs stopped from solution by EU (this report) | Part Five - Trade involved is minuscule
In Part Three of this series yesterday, Facts4EU.Org published the testimony of the heads of the Irish Revenue to the committee of their own parliament, the Dáil, four years ago in 2017. This showed that according to Irish Customs:
- Simple solutions were available without the need for the Northern Ireland Protocol, and
- No infrastructure (“a hard border”) would be required, and
- Irish Customs were prevented from speaking to their British counterparts
Today we publish the damning testimony of the UK Customs boss, backing up his Irish colleagues
In 2017 Sir Jon Thompson was Chief Executive and Permanent Secretary at HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). On Wednesday 29 November 2017 he gave formal testimony to the UK Parliament's Exiting the European Union Committee, chaired by arch-Remainer Hilary Benn MP.
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary
HMRC testimony to UK Parliament, 2017
- No infrastructure between N.I. and Ireland is required under any circumstances
- HMRC boss tells it like it is over Irish question
- New customs system was on schedule and would be online two months before the first planned Brexit
- HMRC were not allowed to discuss new arrangements with Irish and French customs
UK and Irish Customs in broad agreement back in 2017, then stopped from implementing
Sir Jon’s testimony supports that of his Irish colleagues and is damning for the EU and for the Irish government.
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary
KEY EXCERPTS – HEAD OF HMRC – POST-BREXIT CUSTOMS & BORDERS
Sir Jon Thompson giving evidence to the Exiting the European Union Committee, Wed 29 Nov 2017. Testimony was given on the basis that the entire UK (including Northern Ireland) would be OUT of the Single Market, and OUT of the Customs Union
Sir Jon Thompson, Head of HMRC: “It’s possible for the government to make a unilateral decision of what it will do at the border, which would be in line to my answer to your previous question.”
“We do not believe we require any infrastructure between Northern Ireland and Ireland under any circumstances.”
The above is the formal testimony of the then Chief Executive and Permanent Secretary at HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), Sir Jon Thompson, in November 2017 to a committee of the UK Parliament. Facts4EU.Org has repeatedly tried to get this into the public domain.
Both the EU and the Irish Varadkar government carry a heavy responsibility
It’s clear that both the Irish and British Customs organisations were very frustrated at not being allowed to speak to each other. It’s equally clear that they shared the same pragmatic approach in implementing workable solutions which would still avoid a hard border and would have avoided any ‘Protocol’ of the type insisted upon by the EU.
When reviewing the testimony of the Irish Customs which we provided yesterday, and the British Customs which we’re providing today, it must be remembered that these people are public servants. They were unable to say what they truly felt. We have watched – and had to transcribe laboriously – their testimony to their respective parliaments. Their frustration is plain to see.
If they had been allowed by the EU and by the Dublin government to get on with their jobs, working together to sort out the simplest solutions, they would have put in place a soft border plan almost faster than you can say “British bangers barbecued in Bangor”.
Instead, these highly experienced and willing public servants were stopped in their tracks by ideologically-based diktats from Brussels and Dublin.
The N.I. border issue is a damning symbol of the rot at the heart of the entire EU ‘Projekt’
For years Facts4EU.Org has provided evidence on the whole question of the Northern Ireland border, the EU’s Protocol, and the sheer insanity of what should have been a non-issue being blown up up into something which now threatens peace in Northern Ireland and which seriously risks the fragmentation of the United Kingdom.
Only a dysfunctional and bullying cabal in the heart of Brussels could have dreamt this up, with the aid of an Irish political class seeing an opportunity to seize part of the territory of the United Kingdom for itself.
In Part Five of this series we will put the final nail in the coffin of the EU’s Northern Ireland Protocol
The EU consistently says that it is acting “to protect the integrity of the Single Market”. Utter nonsense, as we shall prove in our final report. Can you help us by sponsoring this series? We badly need funding to continue. We are a 'not for profit' team (we make a loss) and any donation goes towards the actual work, not plush London offices, lunch or taxi expenses, or other luxuries of some organisations. Nor do we ask you for further donations if you donate once - we just hope that you keep supporting us.
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Brexit Facts4EU.Org, Sun 13 Jun 2021
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