Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson who is hosting a major conference in Belfast on the implications of BREXIT for Ireland has said that partial disengagement or even full withdrawal by the British state from the EU (and formal repeal or significant erosion of human rights protections) has hugely negative implications for Ireland, North and South.
Martina Anderson said:
“Issues including the Peace Process, human rights protections, agriculture, jobs, infrastructure and energy, cross-Border trade and travel would be directly affected by a BREXIT.
“A Brexit could see the re-emergence of passport checkpoints and customs controls along the border, hindering free movement and disrupting the lives of nearly a million people living in the Border region.
“It would mean no more Single Farm Payment or Rural Development Fund, no Structural Funds, and no PEACE Funding, with high human, social and economic costs. It is highly unlikely that the British government would be willing to replace the direct funding currently received from the EU which between 2007/13 was worth £2.4billion to the North.
“Europe does need serious and radical democratic reform but Sinn Féin believes this should be achieved through increased accountability and transparency of the European institutions.
“So while there is no question that the North of Ireland would be hardest-hit by a Brexit with huge setbacks for political and economic progress and continued democratic transformation, the adverse effects would be felt across every aspect of trade throughout the island.
“Therefore I invite anyone who is interested in finding out the full implications of a BREXIT on the island of Ireland to come along to the conference ‘BREXIT’- Rights and Wrongs at the Balmoral Hotel, Belfast on Friday 29th of January at 9.30 am. A range of speakers will comment from differing perspectives including from the Eurosceptic Left”