My Account


The UK’s exit from the EU (March 2019) continues to be a pressing concern of the Chamber Network, where our members have identified threats to our trade, competitiveness and tourism as being amongst their primary concerns.

The first phase of negotiations came to a close in December where there was agreement that “sufficient progress” was reached across three areas (financial settlement, citizen’s rights and the Irish border with Northern Ireland).

 While concerns have diminished about the prospect of a hard border with Northern Ireland, the coming 10 months will continue to be challenging for both negotiating teams.

 Our priorities as part of the Brexit negotiations is to:

  • Ensure that, in the absence of the UK remaining in the EEA/CU, a trade-friendly future trading relationship is agreed
  • No hard border
  • A realistic transition agreement, that reflects the status quo, to be put in place following the March 2019 deadline

Key Events & Considerations

  • The first phase of talks on the three aforementioned issues met the “sufficient progress” requirement in Dec 2017. However, these discussions have not concluded and will continue in the coming months
  • Talks on the transition arrangement will begin at end Jan 2018, to be concluded in March
  • Negotiations on the future trading relationship are expected to begin in March 2018
  • The European Commission has said that negotiations on the future trading relationship must conclude by October 2018 to allow time for Member States to ratify the proposed deal
  • The UK is due to leave the EU in March 2019
  • We will need to be flexible in our resourcing as negotiations evolve

Outputs / Objectives

  • Ongoing engagement with the Chamber Network to identify concerns and priorities of businesses in Ireland, initially via a CI survey in January
  • Engage as member of Brexit Stakeholder Forum under Tánaiste Simon Coveney
  • Engagement with the proposed Eurochambres Brexit Working Group - This group will allow members to discuss and provide feedback on EU level developments and on national/regional Chamber activities (studies, surveys, interaction with national policy-makers etc) in relation to the UK’s withdrawal from the EU and future relations. It will also provide a forum for interaction with key policy-makers as Chambers seek to ensure that our ‘trade-oriented Brexit’ message is central to the discussions as negotiations move on from phase 1 (citizens’ rights, the bill and the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland) to phase 2 (future EU:UK relationship)
  • Building links with Chambers abroad as member of the Northern Atlantic Chamber Alliance
  • Ongoing engagement British Chambers of Commerce, NI Chamber of Commerce
  • Ongoing work with nominee of Customs Consultative Committee to brief Chambers on inevitable customs changes
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