The government says the bill acts as a “legal safety net” and ‘’an insurance policy’’ to protect against “extreme or irrational interpretations” of the Protocol, ensuring Northern Ireland remains under some EU customs rules to prevent a hard border with the Republic of Ireland.
This past weekend, Prime Minister Boris Johnson came up with a new claim to back his decision: an EU threat of a full-scale trade border down the Irish Sea, blocking the transport of food between Britain and Northern Ireland…Belfast says that is not simply true.
Since its publication last week, the new legislation has caused anger and outrage at home and in Brussels, with several British MPs and former prime ministers saying it’ll undermine the country’s reputation.
And EU lawmakers have made themselves clear: No new trade deal unless the withdrawal agreement is fully implemented. There’s is also talk of possible legal action.
December 31 is the deadline for London and Brussels to reach a free trade agreement. If missed, the UK will have to leave the union without a deal, what is known as a no-deal Brexit.
To become law, the proposed legislation will have to clear both houses of the British parliament, where the Prime minister has a vast majority. Yet, his opponents, among them members of his own party, say they will not let that happen without a fight.