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Irexit: Republic of Ireland must follow UK’s lead and leave EU

It is hard to understand why there is so much agonising over the future of border arrangements between Northern Ireland and the Republic when the UK eventually leaves the EU. The future is clearly predictable.

It is certain that the Republic of Ireland will, or should, vote to leave the EU soon after the United Kingdom and within the negotiated transitional period.

The reasons are:

1. The Republic only joined the EU because they had no real choice when the United Kingdom joined;

2. They initially voted against the Maastricht Treaty, and were forced to accept it by the bullies of Europe;

3. More than 83% of the Republic’s trade is with the UK and the remainder is shared with the EU and the rest of the world;

4. Since 2012, the Republic has been a net contributor to EU coffers. This sum will continue to increase and is most likely to greatly leap upwards following the withdrawal of UK funds and the entry of the new poorer countries. The boom for Ireland post-1973 is at an end;

5. The banking crisis in the Republic was in part overcome by the UK’s contribution when the EU didn’t step up to the plate. Fair weather friends are no friends, and;

6 If the Republic insists on staying with the EU, it is not only the border posts that will be installed. The traditional free movement of Irish workers to the UK will also be greatly controlled in line with the future arrangements for other EU citizens. With President Trump promising to close (or curtail) US borders to foreign workers, life will become very difficult for the Republic’s excess of workers.

It seems to me that the Republic has no logical choice but to follow the UK out of the EU — and the sooner the better.

M LYNN

Belfast

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