Both the DUP and Ulster Unionist leaders launch new attacks on the Northern Ireland Protocol
The DUP and UUP leaders have made fresh criticism of the NI Protocol.
Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP, who leads the DUP, said the decision of Marks & Spencer to withdraw their Christmas click and collect food facility in Northern Ireland points to “the disaster of the protocol”.
He said: “The protocol is harming Northern Ireland both politically and economically. Unionists and nationalists use the M&S Christmas click and collect but this year because of the protocol, no one will have access to the M&S service.
“The Irish Sea border must go. The time for words is over. The people I represent need action to remove this albatross which is holding us back economically and polluting our politics.
“Those parties who created the protocol and called for its rigorous implementation should think again. Whilst their focus may be on north-south politics, the people of Northern Ireland are losing out. It is costing our economy £850m per year and driving down consumer choice and will be driving up consumer costs.”
Meanwhile, the UUP leader Doug Beattie MLA called for the immediate removal of medicines from the protocol.
He said: “It has become patently obvious that EU proposals to fix the debacle created by the protocol over the supply of medicines to Northern Ireland are not good enough.”
Mr Beattie added: “The best way round this is to immediately implement the UK government’s proposal in its Command Paper and remove medicines from the protocol completely.
“The British Generic Manufacturers Association has stated that the EU’s plan to fix the problems won’t work.”
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