Speaking from the All Island Dialogue on Brexit conference in Dundalk, the President of ICMSA has warned that time is running out and he drew attention to what he termed was “the very specific threat” made to Irish farming and agri-food last week by a prominent Conservative Brexiteer.
Pat McCormack said that Irish farmers and the wider agri-food sector were appreciative of the commitment demonstrated by the Commission to securing a Brexit deal that allowed the all-Island approach to our farming and agri-food sectors to continue but he noted that the clock was ticking and we actually were no closer to knowing for certain what the situation would be by the deadline next March. Despite all the assurances and guarantees – welcome though they are – we still did not know what would happen ‘the morning after’ and anxiety was growing apace in the farming and agri-food sectors and right across the economic board
Mr. McCormack was also critical of what he termed was the very specific threat made to our beef exports by the prominent Conservative MP, Jacob Rees Mogg, who stated last week that tariffs could be placed on Irish beef exports that would place the Irish agricultural industry in what the Brexiteer MP termed “serious trouble”. The ICMSA President said that it was difficult not to conclude that the thrust of the MP’s remarks was that the centuries old food trade between Ireland and Britain should now be seen as a hostage to be held against the kind of extreme Brexit favoured by Mr. Rees Mogg and his faction.
Mr. McCormack concluded by saying that the European Council to be held in June must now concentrate on setting forth the kind of hard details that would permit some degree of the planning necessary.
Ends 30 April 2018
Pat McCormack, 087-6168758
ICMSA Press Office
Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758
ICMSA Press Office