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‘Brexit and Tories are twin threats to our economy’ – O’Neill

27 November, 2017 - by Michelle O'Neill

Sinn Féin Leader in the North Michelle O’Neill has branded Brexit and Tory ongoing austerity cuts being imposed by the British Government as the two biggest threats to our economy and communities.

Michelle O’Neill was speaking after she and party Brexit spokesperson John O’Dowd MLA met with the CBI today.

“The North being dragged out of the EU will be a disaster for local business, for farmers and the wider agri-food industry, for the health service, for workers’ rights, border communities and our peace process,” she commented.

“It is not in our economic interests and that is why a cross-community majority of citizens in the North voted against it last June.

“So DUP support for these policies is against the interests and wishes of the majority of people in the North.

“Since the Good Friday Agreement 1998 the European Union has been a critical partner for peace providing substantial political and financial aid which has led to greater economic and social progress on an all-island basis.

“The importance of this relationship cannot be overstated.

“Sinn Féin is sensibly arguing the case for the North to be designated special status within the EU. 

“This will give us continued access to the single market – the biggest trading bloc in the world, and the customs union with no borders or trade tariffs, and securing the entire island of Ireland in the EU  together

“We continue to actively engage with the EU27 and the EU institutions to argue this case.

There is already support for designated special status in both the European Parliament and the Dáil and now we have independent legal opinion from Doughty Street Chambers which details how our position can be achieved within EU law.

“The onus is now on the British Government to provide a solution to the European Council on these critical issues relating to Ireland, and on the Irish Government to defend the national interests.

“I am meeting locally with our key sectors to hear their concerns and today’s meeting with the CBI is part of this engagement.” 

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