03 June 2020
Jersey’s Minister for External Relations, together with the Chief Ministers of Guernsey and the Isle of Man and Guernsey’s Minister for External Relations, has met the Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP, the Paymaster General and Minister at the Cabinet Office responsible for representing the Islands’ interests during the UK-EU negotiations. They met on Monday 1 June to discuss the next round of negotiations being held this week.
The work to prepare for the negotiations and for the end of the transition period has continued since the UK left the EU on 31 January 2020. Restrictions in place as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic have meant new ways of working remotely and meeting virtually with UK counterparts. This has maintained the pace of these negotiations throughout the last few months as a priority for the UK and the Islands’ governments.
In June the UK and EU will hold a High Level Conference to review progress on the negotiations. This week’s meeting with the Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP allowed for discussion before this round of negotiations on matters which could affect Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man.
The Minister for External Relations, Senator Ian Gorst, said: “These are complex negotiations and in order to maintain and develop our trading relationships with the EU we have worked closely with counterparts in Guernsey and the Isle of Man. We have shared interests and our close working will strengthen our positions for both these EU negotiations, and those the UK will be having on Free Trade Agreements with the rest of the world.”
Deputy St Pier, Chief Minister of Guernsey said: “It has been an exceptionally busy few months for all of our Governments and this looks set to continue as we develop and manage our respective economic recovery strategies. Throughout this time we have continued to stay focussed on the detailed work to prepare for these negotiations with the UK Government in order to ensure the interests of all the islands of the Bailiwick are fully represented, even when they differ from those of the UK.”
Howard Quayle MHK, Chief Minister of the Isle of Man said: “These negotiations are fast-paced as we work towards 31 December 2020, to be ready for the end of the transition period, whatever the outcome of the UK-EU negotiations. Each government has had to handle the Covid-19 pandemic to protect our populations from the immediate threat while also planning for the future by ensuring our economic interests are taken into account in these trade negotiations.”