As tense negotiations remain under way between the UK and the EU over the Northern Ireland Protocol, the threat of the UK triggering Article 16 continues to loom.
With negotiations nearly lasting four weeks now, decisive action is needed from both sides, however, a compromise does not seem likely to some.
This pessimistic notion is based on both sides accusing each other of not meeting halfway. The EU, which has issued flexible proposals to the UK, has been called to “step up to the mark” by DUP leader Jeffrey Donaldson.
The UK Government has also issued a December deadline for the EU to formulate a solution.
However, although the EU has been flexible with its proposals on physical goods checks in Northern Ireland, it will not agree with the UK’s preference of removing the overlooking role that the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has on the protocol.
The EU would also prefer that the protocol be amended with certain aspects altered so that it appeals to the UK, however, the UK want the protocol to be fully re-written and don’t seem to be keen on meeting halfway.
It seems that both the EU and the UK are stuck between a rock and a hard place as they struggle to find a middle-ground to make a new agreement regarding the protocol.
However, UK Brexit Minister David Frost has stated that he will not give up on negotiations “until it is abundantly clear that nothing more can be done.” He added that it’s “not inevitable” that Article 16 will be triggered.
With all this being said, what do you think the outcome will be?