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The Windsor Framework

Article posted: 28/02/2023
The Windsor Framework

We have been clear over the last two years that the Northern Ireland Protocol needed fixing, so that it fully reflected the key balances inherent in the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement. Our objective has been to restore that balance by:

  • enabling smooth trade between Great Britain and Northern Ireland; 
  • resolving the problems undermining Northern Ireland’s place in the UK; and 
  • ensuring that lawmakers in Northern Ireland had a say in any new laws affecting them.

The Windsor Framework allows us to deliver on each of these objectives. We are grateful to our European friends – particularly President Von der Leyen for recognising the need for change. In his speech in parliament yesterday, the Prime Minister also paid tribute to the support from the Irish Government and looked forward to continued positive and constructive dialogue with them.

The Windsor Framework is a good deal for both the UK and the EU. The agreement fully respects the EU Single Market – providing new forms of data sharing and powers to prevent fraud in the Green Lane, as well as the full set of controls in the Red Lane for good destined for the EU. 

The Government have published a Command Paper, setting out what the Windsor Framework means in detail, as well as individual sector explainers, detailing what the agreement means for areas such as medicines, parcels, goods and VAT and excise.  

We are confident that this deal marks a turning point for the people of Northern Ireland. We also hope that the agreement marks a new era of partnership for the UK and EU and for Britain and Ireland as a key part of that, as the Taoiseach said on Monday night.

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