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TUV Back Centre for the Union Report | Jim Allister KC MLA

For the TUV, and I believe Unionism in general, the Protocol has always been a sovereignty issue. Thus, any way forward must free us from foreign laws, foreign control and foreign adjudication.

Such is only obtainable by full restoration of Northern Ireland to the Union which created the United Kingdom. This, inescapably, requires full respect for the ‘equal footing’ principle of Article 6 of the Acts of Union in respect of trade between and within the UK, which is the economic basis of the Union and the very thing that the Protocol in the EU’s sovereignty grab has trashed.

Entrenched protection against dilution of the Union, economic or political, would be provided by the Centre for the Union’s proposed Constitutional Bill.

The practicalities of an international border between the UK and the EU must wholly accord with the unequivocal restoration of Northern Ireland’s place within the UK Thus, it is not for the UK to act as the EU’s surrogate in protecting its single market, but for the EU to govern and control its own single market on its own territory. How it does that is a matter for Brussels, not London.

The furthest the UK can go is, as indicated in the Centre for the Union’s paper, 'Restoring Northern Ireland place in the Union, 2023', is to give the neighbourly assistance of discouraging, through legislation, exports to the EU which infringe its standards.

It is not the UK, but the EU, which is claiming legislative and administrative control over another’s territory and, therefore, any solution can only lie in the reversal of that dynamic.”

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