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French farm leader’s call for a hard border is not helpful – Kenny

16 May, 2017 - by Martin Kenny TD

Speaking from Leinster House today, Sinn Féin’s agriculture spokesman, Martin Kenny TD, expressed deep concern at the remarks of French farm leader, Christophe Hillairet, calling for a hard border between North and South, post-Brexit.

Deputy Kenny said:

“M. Hillairet, who is the leader of the French farmers’ association, has called for a hard border in order to protect the French market from non-EU goods entering though the North and coming to the South.

“We can assure him that Irish farmers do not want an influx of non-EU produce either, but it is a pity that, instead of listening to us and supporting designated special status for the North within the EU in order to secure the integrity of the customs union, he should take a Franco-centric approach. Calls for a hard border are not helpful.

“Bringing back customs posts along the border in Ireland will not work for anyone and is a politically unacceptable solution. A solution must be found to keep the North of Ireland in the EU and in the customs union.

“That is the innovative, flexible and imaginative remedy to M. Hilliaret’s concerns, not a simplistic suggestion which includes customs posts, tariffs, and long delays for cross-border communities.” 

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