Please see below for today’s update on key Brexit news items:

  • The head of Ireland’s customs authorities has said up to 8% of freight crossing the border will need to be subject to checks after Brexit. Liam Irwin noted that authorities would try to minimise customs controls, but they are necessary under EU law. He suggested that checks would happen at trade facilitation posts, rather than on the border itself, and that there would also be random, or risk-based, customs checks carried out by mobile units. (BBC)
  • The Liberal Democrats have pledged to hold a second EU referendum in their general election manifesto. The referendum would give the British people the opportunity to vote on the final terms of any deal with the European Union, but would include an option to remain in the European Union. (BBC)
  • The president of a French farming union has called for the re-introduction of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland after Brexit, to prevent food produced outside the European Union crossing the border. British and Irish governments have both repeatedly stressed their objection to returning to a hard border, citing concerns over the potential impact on the economy and the Northern Ireland peace process. The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, has noted that there will have to be some form of customs controls across the Irish border following Brexit. (BBC)
  • The EU has produced a list of papers it will disclose throughout negotiations with the UK, in an effort to achieve transparency. This appears to differ from the UK’s proposed approach: Theresa May has previously stated that revealing key details of the negotiations would be against the national interest. (Bloomberg)