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Neal Statement on Meeting in UK Between President Biden and British Prime Minister Johnson

June 10, 2021
Press Release

Springfield, MA –Richard E. Neal, Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means, released the following statement today as President Joe Biden met with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Cornwall, England during his first overseas trip as president. The lack of an agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union over the post-Brexit trade rule known as the Northern Ireland Protocol was one of the subjects discussed between the two leaders.

“President Biden’s bilateral meeting in Cornwall today with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is timely and important particularly regarding the impasse between the United Kingdom and the European Union over the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol. I strongly support the Biden Administration’s efforts to encourage both the UK and the EU to continue to their talks in an attempt to reach a negotiated settlement to post-Brexit trade rules that do not undermine the Good Friday Agreement.  As a co-guarantor of the that historic accord, the United States has a particular interest in protecting the pact that helped transform the island of Ireland. Nearly 25 years after the people of Ireland, north and south, voted overwhelmingly to support the peace deal in an unprecedented referendum, there can be no disruption to the Good Friday Agreement. It is a template for successful conflict resolution around the globe. President Biden has been consistent and outspoken on this issue and is correct to suggest that UK Brexit negotiator David Frost and EU Commissioner Marcos Sefcovic need to continue their diplomatic discussions to find common ground on the issue of the Northern Ireland Protocol. Unilateral decisions and actions are not helpful to the process going forward.”