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Brexit Facts4EU.org reports the UK played a key role in supplying the fossil fuel to the bloc in the first quarter of the year.
It quotes the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: “Gas exports to the EU more than doubled in Q1 2022, as interconnectors with Belgium and the Netherlands were used to export gas to mainland Europe.”
The media outlet accuses the EU of not thanking Britain for the energy boost.
Daniel Hodson, whose Twitter bio states he is Gresham Professor of Commerce, lashed out at the bloc, tweeting: “It’s called being a good friend and neighbour. How about a little reciprocity? Think NI Protocol, or illegal channel crossings, for instance.”
THIS BLOG IS NOW CLOSED. SEE BELOW FOR COVERAGE
Brexit is the tern used to refer to Britain’s exit from the European Union.
An official referendum took place on June 23 2016.
The vote to leave the EU was 52 percent, while the vote to remain was 48 percent.
SINN FEIN has warned Liz Truss not to trigger Article 16 to unshackle Britain from the hated Northern Ireland Protocol.
Finance Minister Conor Murphy said triggering the Article 16 mechanism to suspend parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol would make the job of resolving issues with the Irish Sea trading arrangements more difficult.
The warning comes amid reports Ms Truss is considering triggering the process if she is successful in her bid to become Tory Party leader and Prime Minister.
Mr Murphy said: “I think they have had a reckless approach to their dealings with the EU for some time now and the casualty in all that is, unfortunately, us here. And the triggering of Article 16 is not going to resolve that. These issues around the Protocol need to be resolved through dialogue, not through unilateral action in terms of protocol legislation or unilateral action in terms of triggering Article 16. That actually makes the ability to resolve any issues there are more difficult. And so it seems that the British Tory leadership are simply playing to their own grassroots and they have no regard for the damage that that is causing the economy here, or the uncertainty that’s creating for businesses and for households here.”
THE Government has committed to delivering a £400 energy bill discount to people in Northern Ireland.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Nadhim Zahawi said the support would be delivered “as soon as possible” but did not set out a firm timeframe.
Stormont Finance Minister Conor Murphy warned no guarantee has been offered on when the payments will be made and said it is not clear if people in Northern Ireland will receive the money at the same time as those in the rest of the UK.
However, DUP Economy Minister Gordon Lyons said it is his belief that the scheme will be delivered in November and it is anticipated the payment will be a one-off lump sum to energy companies.
There had been uncertainty about how the scheme would be implemented in Northern Ireland, where there is currently no functioning powersharing Executive as part of the DUP’s protest against the post-Brexit Northern Ireland Protocol.
The ministers were speaking after a meeting of a taskforce set up by Mr Zahawi to look at how to operate the energy support scheme in Northern Ireland.
The Westminster Government revealed in July details of the scheme in which households in Great Britain would get more than £60 off their energy bills each month throughout winter as part of its cost-of-living support.
The money, part of a package announced in May, will be delivered in six instalments to 29 million households.
Households will see £66 taken off their energy bills in October and November, and £67 a month between December and March, the Government said.EMMANUEL MACRON has suggested it is a “problem” if Britain cannot call itself a friend of France.
His comment comes amid an unexpected diplomatic row sparked by remarks made by Foreign Secretary Liz Truss at a Tory leadership hustings.
The French president said he believed the UK was a “friend” despite what the Foreign Secretary might suggest, after Ms Truss told Tory members in Norwich on Thursday she was undecided as to whether the French leader was a “friend or foe”.
Mr Macron, asked his views on the comments, responded after a long pause: “Listen, it’s never good to lose your bearings too much in life. If one asks the question – which is how I will answer you – whoever is considered for the leadership in Great Britain, I won’t ponder it for a single second.
“The United Kingdom is a friend of France, and you know we live in a complicated world, there are more and more liberals, authoritarian democracies, so there is a sense of imbalance.”
He told FranceInfo: “If the French and British are not capable of saying whether we are friends or enemies – the term is not neutral – we are going to have a problem.
“So yes of course the British people, the nation which is the United Kingdom, is a friend, strong and allied, whoever its leaders are and sometimes in spite of the leaders and the small mistakes they can make in their speeches.”
A number of issues have undermined relations between Britain and France in recent months, including boat crossings in the Channel and travel chaos around Dover, which Ms Truss blamed on a lack of staffing by the French authorities.
The comments came after Ms Truss and her leadership rival Rishi Sunak were asked a series of quickfire questions at the Norwich hustings.
TalkTV’s Julia Hartley-Brewer, the event host, asked Ms Truss: “President Macron, friend or foe?”
Ms Truss replied, to loud applause: “The jury’s out.
“But if I become Prime Minister, I would judge him on deeds, not words.”
Former chancellor Mr Sunak had quickly answered “friend” when asked the same question.THE impact of Brexit and soaring energy costs has been discussed by a new group aiming to help Scotland’s retail sector in its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first meeting of the Retail Industry Leadership Group (RILG) also saw members consider how to deliver the Scottish Government’s Retail Strategy.
Co-chaired by public finance minister Tom Arthur and John Lewis Partnership Chief Executive Andrew Murphy, the group includes senior business representatives, trade unions and industry groups.
It intends to work alongside Holyrood to help the country’s retail sector in tackling challenges while emerging with more resilience from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mr Arthur said: “This first meeting of the Retail Industry Leadership Group was timely given the cost crisis we are facing, and allowed us to learn more about the impact on retail businesses, staff and customers.
“Implementing the retail strategy can help the sector seize opportunities, deal with longer-term trends, and recover from immediate challenges.
“There is no single solution to helping retailers so, as we approach a challenging winter, it is essential the response from Government at every level happens at speed, to address the nature and magnitude of the emergency.”
Mr Murphy added: “There was a shared concern around the impact inflation is having on suppliers, employees, customers and our communities through the current cost-of-living crisis.
“It is clear both retailers and the Scottish Government continue to work hard to find ways to provide more support where they can.
“I’m excited by the evident enthusiasm of the leadership group to drive forward the implementation of the retail strategy. Fair Work, the skills agenda and the importance of retail in delivering high quality town and city centres are uppermost in our minds as we look ahead to the next few months.”
FRENCH MEPs are urging the EU to take measures to end British discharges of raw sewage into shared waters – part of what they say is an unacceptable lowering of environmental standards since Brexit.
Three French lawmakers said in a letter to EU Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevicius they feared harm to marine biodiversity and to the fish and shellfish industry.
Fishing committee chief Pierre Karleskind, committee member Stephanie Yon-Courtin, who is also a member of the Normandy regional council, and former French minister Nathalie Loiseau referred to media reports last week about large-scale pumping of sewage into Britain’s seas.
Ms Yon-Courtin said in a statement: “We cannot let the environment, the economic activity of our fishermen and the health of citizens be seriously endangered by the repeated negligence of the United Kingdom in the management of its wastewater.”
The French MEPs said Britain was no longer subject to EU environmental rules after leaving the bloc and had chosen to cut its water quality standards despite being a signatory to the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea, which contains provisions on environmental protection.
They wrote: “This is unacceptable. We ask the Commission to use all political and legal means in its possession to end the situation.”
British water treatment facilities temporarily discharge raw sewage into seas and rivers if they are inundated by heavy rainfall and risk flooding. Environmental campaigners say such discharges are becoming more common.
England and Wales regulator Ofwat and the British government’s Environment Agency are investigating several water companies which admitted they might be making unpermitted sewage discharges.
Pollution warnings telling beachgoers not to swim in the sea off English beaches at the height of the summer holiday season due to raw sewage being discharged has increased pressure on the British government to take action on water companies.
On Friday, it set out a plan to tackle sewage discharges, requiring water companies to do more to treat sewage before it is discharged, and to invest in improving storm overflows, with fines for those who do not meet new targets.
Liz Truss has put the EU on alert after making it clear she is considering triggering Article 16 of the hated Northern Ireland Protocol as the exact date of her next showdown with the bloc looms.
Government sources have said Ms Truss plans to trigger Article 16 proceedings if she succeeds in her bid to win Tory Party leader and Prime Minister.
In June, the Government tabled legislation to shred the hated deal, prompting the EU to relaunch legal proceedings against the UK for allegedly failing to properly implement Irish Sea border checks.
The UK has until September 15 to respond to the EU legal action — only 10 days after the Tory leader enters Downing Street.
Former special adviser to the Prime Minister Raoul Ruparel commented: “Probably a controversial view but I don’t see this as massive escalation.
“UK has to respond to EU challenging legal base of current standstill – which is supported by NI business and most political parties.
“So in that narrow sense this is potentially a legal way to do this.
“Of course this has all only come about or become necessary because of UK legislation seeking to rewrite Protocol.
“In the end, I find it hard to imagine standstill actually being removed in practice. Key question remains how EU will respond if Bill comes into force.”
Labour shadow Foreign Secretary David Lammy has attacked Liz Truss for “a terrible and worrying lack of judgement” after she said the “jury’s out” on whether the French President is a “friend or foe” to the UK.
The Tory leadership frontrunner told party members last night she would judge the Mr Macron on “deeds not words”.
Labour has been criticised by Tory MPs after Mr Lammy lept to the defence of Mr Macron accusing the Foreign Secretary of a “needlessly insult”.
He said: “At a time when the West must stay united in the face of Russian attempts to divide us, the fact the Foreign Secretary has chosen to needlessly insult one of our closest allies shows a terrible and worrying lack of judgement.
“Liz Truss’s decision-making has clearly become clouded by weeks and weeks of playing to the gallery of Tory members rather than focusing on the country.”
The Northern Ireland protocol is the piece of legislation that prevents a hard border from being in place between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Before Brexit, it was easy to transport goods between Northern Ireland and the Republic because both sides were subject to the same EU rules.
However, after Brexit, a new system was needed as the EU has strict rules and requires border checks when certain goods arrive from non-EU countries.
The protocol agreed that there would be no checks at the Irish border but there would instead be checks on goods coming from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.
However, the UK government now wants to rip up parts of the protocol and remove the need for goods checks between Britain and Northern Ireland.
American-owned Cummins is creating new jobs and building a new £14million Powertrain Test Facility at its Darlington plant.
The Indiana-headquartered firm produced 66,000 engines at the County Durham site last year, where it employs more than 1.500 people.
American-owned Cummins is creating new jobs and building a new u00a314 million Powertrain Test Facility at its Darlington plant. The Indiana-headquartered firm produced 66,000 engines at the County Durham site last year, where it employs more than 1.500 people. #UKmfgud83cuddecud83cudde7 pic.twitter.com/b2ON2wMHQS
Allister Heath, Health Editor of The Sunday Telegraph, argues that Remainers are capitalising on the political shift of a new Prime Minister to cancel Brexit.
He said: “They [Remainers] are attempting to blame Brexit for almost all of Britain’s myriad difficulties, claiming that the pain is self-evidently worse in the UK (“Brexit Britain”) than it is in Europe, and even portraying problems that are entirely unrelated to the European question as a Vote Leave broken promise.
“Some Remainers are redefining themselves as outsiders, as rebels, as supporters of windfall taxes and nationalisation, and seeking to depict Brexiteers as an elite responsible for the energy and water crises.”
He warned: “Eurosceptics need to take this new push to overturn Brexit extremely seriously.”Britain voted to leave the European Union six years ago, yet Remainers view a new Prime Minister as an opportunity to reconsider our position.
The UK is heading towards its third Prime Minister since the 2016 Brexit referendum and either Liz Truss or Rishi Sunak will be required to complete unresolved issues such as the transition out of the European Union.
Theresa May said she would “make Brexit work”, while Boris Johnson said he could “get Brexit done”, yet Brexit remains unresolved.
Should they hold another Brexit referendum? Vote in our poll.Liz Truss can “set the tone for her Premiership” – and send a strong signal to Brussels – by triggering Article 16, a Brexiteer has said after reports that the Foreign Secretary is poised to do just that.
Referring to former Brexit Minister Lord David Frost, former MEP Ben Habib told Express.co.uk: “Lord Frost declared a year ago the conditions existed to suspend the Northern Ireland Protocol, by invoking its Article 16.
“What he rightly acknowledged was that British citizens in NI were being economically impacted by the Protocol.“
Having recognised the inherent difficulties, the Government had been “duty bound to act” yet did nothing, Mr Habib said.
He added: “It was a gross dereliction of duty and one which severely damaged unionists’ faith in Westminster.”
He continued: “Rumour has it she will now, at last, invoke Article 16 if she becomes Prime Minister.
“That would absolutely be the right thing to do. Suspending the Protocol would ameliorate the difficulties in Northern Ireland, send a strong message to Brussels and restore trust in government.
“It would set the tone of her premiership. She would reveal in one move that she is indeed the strong leader for whom the electorate yearns.”
READ MORELiz Truss’s plans for the Northern Ireland protocol could be swerved amid calls for Stormont to act “urgently”.
The Northern Ireland Business Brexit Working Group said there would be a “myriad of reputational, legal and commercial risks” if the Government follows through with plans to scrap part of the deal.
SDLP MLA Sinead McLaughlin called on Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Shailesh Vara to “get a grip on the crisis” and find a way to make the deal work for all businesses.
She said: “It’s now imperative that political leaders listen to the voices of our trading organisations and act on their recommendations.
“I have today written to Secretary of State Vara urging him to take urgent action on the issues within the remit of the British Government and get a grip on this crisis before more businesses pay the price.”
Eurostar blaming Brexit for services not stopping in Kent for at least two years is “wrong and unacceptable”, a former MEP has said.
Eurostar argues its decision stems in part from the need for extra restrictions on entry since Britain quit the bloc, with UK travellers now treated as third-country citizens, as well as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
However, Mr Habib, who sat in Brussels in 2019 alongside other Brexit Party MEPs including Nigel Farage, was highly sceptical.
He told Express.co.uk: “There has not been much love lost between France and Britain since 1066.
“Eurotunnel was meant to help heal the division but it seems not to have worked.
“Across a whole host of issues and now the operations of the tunnel itself, we find ourselves at odds with France.”
READ MOREIn December, Lord Frost resigned as chief Brexit negotiator, making way for his successor, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.
Since taking on the role Brexit negotiations with her EU counterpart Maros Sefcovic have made little progress.
However, Ms Truss has outlined plans to scrap parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol.
She said the first priority is to uphold the Good Friday agreement.
Ms Truss said the UK wants to see a first minister and deputy first minister in place in Northern Ireland.
She is currently running against her rival, Rishi Sunak, to become the next Conservative Party leader and Prime Minister.Rishi Sunak acknowledged that trade intensity has fallen since Brexit, but said that the Covid-19 pandemic could be the reason for such a fall.
“Brexit was an issue that was fiercely debated, but the reality was that we had a very clear democratic process that we have to respect,” he said.
He said it was “unclear” how much of that decline is down to the effects of the pandemic and how much is a result of “changing trade patterns” since leaving the EU
The former chancellor, who backed Brexit, said: “The key thing now is that we have the ability to sign new trade deals with every country around the world.”Joe Biden’s team tried to convince Britain to back down in a row with the European Union over the Northern Ireland protocol earlier this year, it was reported.
In May, US President Joe Biden’s allies were working to convince the UK to back down in the trade row with the EU.
Congressman Richard Neal is one of many people in Washington who have criticised the UK Government’s stance.
He told the Guardian at the time: “They haven’t breached it yet. They’re talking about breaching it, so part of my job is to convince them not to breach it.”
READ MOREBritish officials are being sent to European capitals to plead with EU leaders not to cut aid to Ukraine in its fight against Russia.
European leaders are mulling the idea to reduce their economic and military support to Ukraine as the bloc faces a deep cost of living crisis.
In a bid to make the case against cutting funds to Kyiv, UK diplomats are being sent to European capitals.
On Tuesday, Josep Borrell, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security, said Vladimir Putin sees “the weariness of the Europeans and the reluctance of their citizens to bear the consequences of support for Ukraine”.
British homeowners in France will face new tough regulations preventing them from upping rent charges under Emmanuel Macron’s new green laws.
The French President’s “climate and resiliency” bill sees new rent rise freezes applied to landlords in France whose properties fail to pass the two lowest categories of energy proficiency.
Under EU’s energy directives, every house in France needs an Energy Performance Certificate or EPC, providing details of its energy efficiency.
As of Wednesday, homeowners are no longer able to increase rent on properties ranked F or G, the two lowest bands of energy proficiency.
Despite skyrocketing inflation in the country, therefore, British people owning and renting properties in France under those two energy bands will lose out substantially.
And by 2025, unless they ensure their properties are in line with higher bands of energy proficiency, they will be banned from renting out altogether.
READ MORE Good morning from London. I’m Tara Fair, I’ll be bringing you all the latest developments on Brexit. Please feel free to get in touch with me as I work if you have a story or tips to share! Your thoughts are always welcome.
Email: [email protected]
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