- The European Commission's Maros Sefcovic said on Monday that he's "absolutely convinced" Britain and the European Union could break their impasse over post-Brexit trade arrangements for Northern Ireland if London engages on outstanding issues.
Britain and the EU agreed last week to strengthen efforts to resolve the problems around Northern Ireland protocol. However, in response, Brussels cautiously welcomed a change in tone from London, with "significant gaps" announcing.
Sefcovic, the top European official who dealt with the matter said a meeting last week with Frost was "much better" than their previous engagement, but remained concerned about the British government's "rhetoric and action" around the protocol.
If our partners in the UK would engage and hope that we would see more this week, then I'm completely convinced we can resolve all the issues troubling people on the ground," Sefcovic told an Irish parliamentary committee.
The 27-nation union says London is obligated to under their divorce agreement. A Brexit decree gave the Great Britain an end to the EU last year, but has since put off the border inspection between the northern side of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland.
London says the checks are disproportionate and build tension in Northern Ireland, risking a peace deal in 1998.
Sefcovic reiterated that Brussels needs London to reciprocate in the talks with its own concessions after it offered to cut some of the checks required for goods moving from Britain to Northern Ireland. read more about resuscitation.
If the two sides agreed on the supply of medicines from Britain and Northern Ireland, the most pressing issue he said had to solve before the end of the year, it would need to be solved.
The two sides also agreed last Friday to move to "very concrete discussions on legal texts", he added.
In an opening statement, I have to say that I'm worried about the rhetoric and action of the UK, especially snubbed in terms of the implementation of the agreements, and the protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland, "..