Tag Archives: Antrim North MLA

Cross-border tariffs a major concern for NI dairy producers

The post-Brexit relationship between farmers in Northern Ireland who send their produce across the border for processing and the southern processors is a key concern for the industry, the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) has said. On the eve of Article 50 being triggered by the UK government, the UFU said that “access to labour” was also a potential problem if the free movement of people is curtailed. UFU dairy chairman William Irvine said Northern Ireland’s “unique situation and complexities” should be recognised by both the UK and the EU. Speaking after travelling to Brussels to meet with senior dairy officials in the European Commission, Mr Irvine said any tariffs imposed on agriculture products entering the EU would have a significant impact on the dairy sector. “A large number of dairy farmers here are members of co-ops in the south. Clearly, there are strong links between farmers here and processors south … Continue reading

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Little sympathy for Bell, as Nesbitt keeps low profile

Kellie Armstrong Strangford was always going to be interesting, with the inevitable loss of at least two MLAs, and reports of queues at polling stations only added to the drama. Former DUP MLA Jonathan Bell, who ran as an independent, was the first casualty after a seventh round of counting, having only received 1,794 votes. He didn’t show up for the result. Former party colleague Simon Hamilton, who was re-elected, said: “I predicted that his political career would be over and now the people have spoken.” Mike Nesbitt also kept a low profile and left before the declaration of his own win after the seventh count. Returning Alliance MLA Kellie Armstrong was the first candidate elected, but not until the fourth stage of counting. The SDLP’s Joe Boyle, standing for a fifth time, secured his largest ever share of first preference votes (3,045) and received more transfers from Ulster Unionist … Continue reading

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Sinn Fein cut short Stormont talks saying Secretary of State’s contribution was ‘waffle waffle waffle’

DUP leader Arlene Foster and party member Simon Hamilton MLA speak to the media before talks at Stormont Castle. Photo by Peter Morrison / PressEye Wednesday 8th March 2017 Sinn Fein have cut short their meeting with Northern Ireland Secretary of State James Brokenshire. Sinn Fein’s leader in Northern Ireland Michelle O’Neill and Gerry Adams accused Mr Brokenshire of engaging in “waffle, waffle and more waffle” over legacy issues. Mr Brokenshire has been meeting Stormont party leaders in an attempt to persuade them to form a new power-sharing executive. The parties have three weeks to overcome their differences following the snap Assembly election. Speaking afterwards Michelle O’Neill said: “We needed a fundamental change in approach from the British Government. We made that very clear to James Brokenshire today. “All he did was waffle, waffle and more waffle in relation to how we are going to go forward and give families … Continue reading

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Red-faced Alliance gets it wrong over St Pat’s parade ‘IRA chants’

Comment: Paula Bradshaw The Alliance Party has apologised after issuing a statement condemning IRA chanting at the St Patrick’s Day parade – in a video that turned out to be a year old. Its Press office released the statement on Sunday criticising what it claimed were people “chanting pro-IRA slogans” while watching the St Patrick’s Day parade through Belfast city centre. Suspicions were raised because the sunny weather in the video did not match the rainy conditions on Friday. When the Belfast Telegraph contacted Alliance on Sunday about the discrepancy, its Press officer insisted the video was from Friday, adding that the party stood over its statement. However, yesterday it admitted it had got it wrong, and offered an apology. A spokesman said the video and Press release were issued “in good faith”. He added: “In relation to a video circulating showing chanting at the St Patrick’s Day parade in … Continue reading

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Post-Brexit border key issue for dairy

The Ulster Farmers’ Union says the movement of goods, and access to labour across the border, after Brexit are key concerns for farmers and dairy processors. It took this message to Brussels this week, when it met senior dairy officials in the European Commission. UFU dairy chairman, William Irvine said afterwards that Northern Ireland’s unique situation and the complexities of what will be a land border between the UK and EU are well recognised. “A large number of dairy farmers here are members of co-ops in the South. Clearly, there are strong links between farmers here and processors south of the border, and indeed vice versa. This applies to other sectors as well as dairy, and we were encouraged that the will seems to exist in Brussels for a soft border,” he explained. Trade after Brexit was also on the agenda, with the focus on the importance of minimising barriers. … Continue reading

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