September 17, 2018 / 12:50 PM / 8 months ago

Ireland flags 'east-west' technology as possible Brexit border aid

A former customs hut is seen behind a Brexit sign between Donegal in the Republic of Ireland and Londonderry in Northern Ireland at the border village of Muff, Ireland, February 1, 2018. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Brexit negotiators are not contemplating using technology to solve the issue of the border on the island of Ireland but its use to help simplify checks between Britain and the island is a “different question”, Ireland’s foreign minister said on Monday.

The European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said this month that he is willing to consider new ways to solve the Irish border issue, including technical checks on board vessels or in ports outside Ireland.

“We are not talking about technology to solve the border on the island of Ireland question. Whether technology can help east-west trade is a different question to make the checks as simple and as de-dramatised as possible but that is a matter for the negotiating teams,” Simon Coveney told national broadcaster RTE.

Reporting by Padraic Halpin; Editing by Toby Chopra

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