Villiers downplays possible Brexit border restrictions

The Irish tricolour flag
The Irish tricolour flag

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Theresa Villiers has suggested that the island of Ireland could remain effectively borderless when it comes to moving goods, even if the UK quits the EU.

Late on Thursday night she had reportedly told Sky News that her “instinct” was that Remain would win.

Couting at the Titanic Count centre in Belfast in the EU referendum.
Photo Declan Roughan
 Presseye

Couting at the Titanic Count centre in Belfast in the EU referendum. Photo Declan Roughan Presseye

Speaking of the results in the early hours of Friday, at a time when the margin between Leave and Remain was extremely slim, she said there was “always a reversion to the status quo” when it came to voters opting not to endorse major change.

Whilst the Prime Minister David Cameron had said that border checks could be a reality for the Province, she played down the possibility.

She was asked by David Dimbleby on the BBC about what may happen to the Northern Ireland-Republic of Ireland border if, by the time the count is over, the UK did opt to leave,

“If you look around the EU’s external borders, thousands of lorries and goods pass every day without any restrictions,” she said.

“Modern technology means it is possible to deal with these issues. And it would be manifestly [in the] interest of both the UK and Ireland that we find a way to do that.”