October 5, 2020

Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation

Drawing together a range of organisations from Northern Ireland and Ireland, the Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation has been established as the prime contact point for purposes of meaningful consultation between cross-border civil society and regional, national and EU bodies on matters relevant to cooperation between Northern Ireland and Ireland, and between the island of Ireland and Great Britain.

The primary objective of the Ad-Hoc Group is to secure the continued means to cooperate within and between these islands, ensuring that agreements, policies or legislation developed or enacted by relevant regional/devolved and national governments and/or the European Union are conducive of the maintenance of the conditions necessary for cooperation within and between the island of Ireland and with Great Britain.

To date the Ad-Hoc Group has engaged with:

  • Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Republic of Ireland
  • Northern Ireland Executive Office
  • Cabinet Office, UK Government
  • Task Force for Relations with the United Kingdom, European Commission
  • SDLP, Northern Ireland
  • Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, UK Labour Party
  • Fine Gael, Republic of Ireland
  • Department of the Taoiseach, Republic of Ireland
  • Irish Minister for European Affairs
  • Portuguese Secretary of State for European Affairs
  • UK Secretary of State for Northern Ireland 

While there have been a broad range of issues discussed with the relevant parties during the course of meetings, there have been largely constant themes raised by the Ad-Hoc Group:

  • A process of engagement with Civil Society, and in particular with the Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation in the post-transition period.
  • Consideration be given to the impact of the implementation of the Northern Ireland/Ireland Protocol on cross border cooperation on the island of Ireland.
  • Borderproofing must become a common policy in all relevant jurisdictions on a North/South, East/West basis.
  • Clarity on the Frontier Workers’ Scheme between the UK and EU, provisioned in the Withdrawal Agreement

 

Publications to date:

2020 10 03 – Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation expresses concerns to UK Prime Minister in letter

2020 09 14 – Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation calls for urgent amendments to the Internal Market Bill

2020 08 14 – Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation issues Position Paper on the Protocol and maintaining the conditions for cooperation

2020 07 30 – Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation issues statement on the eve of plenary meeting of the North South Ministerial Council

2020 11 05 – Letter from the Northern Ireland Office in response to Ad-Hoc Group’s letter to UK Prime Minister 

2020 12 16 – Letter from the Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation to the Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee

2021 01 18 – Letter from Michael Gove in response to Ad-Hoc Group’s letter to the Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee

2021 03 10 – Letter from Maroš Šefčovič in response to Ad-Hoc Group’s letter to the Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee

2021 03 26 – Letter from the Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation to Lord Frost

2021 03 26 – Letter from the Ad-Hoc Group for North-South and East-West Cooperation to Maroš Šefčovič

 

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