Brexit: Rishi Sunak interviewed on Today after UK and EU agree Northern Ireland deal – politics live

Sunak suggests new deal will go ahead anyway, regardless of whether or not DUP back it

Q: If the DUP decide not to go ahead with power sharing, will the framework still go ahead?

Sunak says it is what the government has agreed with the EU.

It is about what is best for the people of Northern Ireland, he says.

That is what he will be talking about to people in Northern Ireland today.

Key events

Q: Businesses here say the rise in corporation tax will make it hard to compete with Ireland?

Sunak says businesses want stability and certainty.

He has spent a lot of time engaging with business groups. They say if the protocol issue is resolved, that will unlock a lot of investment. Because Northern Ireland is in the single market, it is an attractive location for businesses.

Q: Do you hope this will open up a new relationship with the EU?

Sunak says it is important to have a good relationship with our closest neighbour. He says we have lots of shared challenges. Cooperation with countries like France is yielding benefits.

He ends by describing the Stormont brake as “an incredibly powerful measure”.

The interview is over.

Q: Have you talked to Boris Johnson about this?

Sunak says of course he talks to “the former prime minister”.

Sunak suggests new deal will go ahead anyway, regardless of whether or not DUP back it

Q: If the DUP decide not to go ahead with power sharing, will the framework still go ahead?

Sunak says it is what the government has agreed with the EU.

It is about what is best for the people of Northern Ireland, he says.

That is what he will be talking about to people in Northern Ireland today.

Sunak says less than 3% of EU laws will continue to apply in Northern Ireland under deal

Sunak says the deal is about “balance”. That is why some EU laws will still apply in Northern Ireland. But less than 3% of laws will continue to apply there.

And the Stormont brake will allow Northern Ireland to block new EU laws there, he says.

Sunak confirms all border posts will not be removed. Border posts will be needed for goods in the red channel, he says.

Q: And there will still be checks in the green lane, won’t there?

Sunak says there won’t be routine checks. But there will be checks when there are suspicions of criminality or smuggling. That is right, he says.

Sunak declines to apologise for government’s decision to sign original NI protocl

Martha Kearney is interviewing Rishi Sunak on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. They are both in Northern Ireland.

Q: What will people in Northern Ireland notice from this?

Sunak says he has spent a lot of time listening to the problems in Northern Ireland. He thinks the Windsor framework will address those. He hopes people will support it when they have had “the time and the space” to read it.

Q: You are admitting that the original protocol was flawed. Will you apologise for it?

Sunak says he has been explicit about the problems. It is just his job to fix it.

Biden says NI agreement ‘essential step to ensuring hard-earned peace is preserved’

Joe Biden, the American president, has welcomed the Northern Ireland protocol deal. Here is an extract from the statement he has released.

Today’s announcement between the United Kingdom and the European Union on the Windsor framework is an essential step to ensuring that the hard-earned peace and progress of the Belfast/Good Friday agreement is preserved and strengthened. I appreciate the efforts of the leaders and officials on all sides who worked tirelessly to find a way forward that protects Northern Ireland’s place within the UK’s internal market as well as the EU’s single market, to the benefit of all communities in Northern Ireland.

Rishi Sunak interviewed on Today after UK and EU agree Northern Ireland deal

Good morning. Yesterday, after months of negotiating a deal and days of dithering about how to present it, Rishi Sunak finally announed the “Windsor framework” – the new version of the Northern Ireland protocol agreed with the EU. He was worried about provoking a Conservative Brexiter backlash, but yesterday the announcement landed about as well as he could have expected – or perhaps even better.

Tory MPs were largely supportive and the Brexit hardliners in the ERG, who only a week ago said that any deal that kept Northern Ireland under the remit of the European court of justice (as the Windsor framework does) would be unacceptable, were reserving judgment, and not speaking out in public. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, the DUP leader, was reasonably positive (by unionist standards). Outright criticism was coming only from people such as Nigel Farage and the DUP hardliner Ian Paisley, both of whom said the deal “did not cut the mustard”. By Brexiter standards, that is hardly the most damning verdict.

And Boris Johnson? The former PM had been threatening to lead a Tory revolt against the renegotiation. In the event, he did not even attend the Commons statement. (Perhaps he was on another urgent trip to Afghanistan?) As my colleague Aubrey Allegretti reports, sources say he is still considering what to do. But this morning Johnson looks diminished. As Paul Waugh writes in the i, “the real win for Sunak may be that he’s finally weaning his party off its addiction to Boris Johnson”.

Here is our overnight story about the announcement yesterday.

Rishi Sunak is about to give an interview to Today. Here is the agenda for the day.

8.10am: Rishi Sunak is interviewed on the Today programme. He is in Belfast, where later he will be doing a Q&A with workers.

11.30am: Downing Street holds a lobby briefing.

11.30am: Grant Shapps, the energy secretary, takes questions in the Commons.

12.20pm: Humza Yousaf, the SNP leadership candidate, launches his early years childcare strategy.

12.30pm: Michael Gove, the levelling up secretary, gives a speech to the Onward thinktank.

5pm: Sunak is due to address the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee in London.

I’ll try to monitor the comments below the line (BTL) but it is impossible to read them all. If you have a direct question, do include “Andrew” in it somewhere and I’m more likely to find it. I do try to answer questions, and if they are of general interest I will post the question and reply above the line (ATL), although I can’t promise to do this for everyone.

If you want to attract my attention quickly, it is probably better to use Twitter. I’m on @AndrewSparrow.

Alternatively, you can email me at [email protected].

source: theguardian.com