The leader of Sinn Fein has admitted to Sky News that the Northern Ireland Protocol as it stands is causing problems for businesses.
Speaking on Sky News’ Beth Rigby interviews programme, Mary Lou McDonald said that “the fact that Brexit has thrown up this blizzard of paper, in some instances, is problematic”.
Ms McDonald also said that the UK’s proposal to “legislate to break the law” is “an extremely dangerous place to go” and that she “absolutely” believes a border poll – a referendum on unification – will take place within the next decade.
Earlier this week, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss outlined plans to change the protocol.
She told the Commons the UK faces a “very grave and serious situation” and that without the UK government resolving problems caused by the Northern Ireland Protocol the Stormont power sharing executive will not be able to be re-established.
Britain says it does not want to scrap the arrangement and would prefer to come to a negotiated settlement.
But Sinn Féin, which became the first nationalist party to win the most seats in the Northern Ireland Assembly in its 101-year history earlier this month, said the proposal would break international law.
Sinn Féin has accused the UK government of coordinating with “obstructionist tactics” by its political opponents in the DUP who are unhappy with the protocol, which governs Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit trading arrangements.
Speaking to Sky News’ political editor Beth Rigby, Ms McDonald said: “I think the decision by the British government to step outside of international, in fact worse than that, to legislate to break the law is an extremely dangerous place to go.
“I think it demonstrates really bad faith, in fact, I think it amplifies the kind of bad faith that we’ve seen from Boris Johnson’s government since Brexit and it certainly does nothing, let me repeat, does nothing to assist in the very necessary goal of urgently and immediately establishing an executive government in the North of Ireland.”