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Britain and the EU must reach a compromise on the Northern Ireland Protocol or the region could suffer political and economic damage, the former head of public service warned.

Sir David Sterling called on both sides to compromise in order for the protocol to work successfully.

He said that if an agreement could not be reached, Northern Ireland would face “a prolonged period of political instability and poor economic performance”.

Sir David said the UK had to give up some of the “sovereignty” regained by Brexit while the EU had to move away from its “zero risk” policy on the protocol.

The post-Brexit solution to avoid it A hard border on the island of Ireland has attracted trade unionists who feel they are by creating a trade border in the Irish Sea from the rest of the UK Cutting off the kingdom caused trouble.

Both new DUP leader Edwin Poots and new UUP leader Doug Beattie have put abolition of the protocol at the forefront of their plans.

However, business leaders have pointed this out that the protocol could attract investment to Northern Ireland while others have complained of difficulties importing goods from the UK.

Talks are underway between the EU and the UK to address technical issues related to the protocol.

Sir David led the civil service in Northern Ireland from 2017-2020 and was responsible after the collapse of the Assembly and during the Brexit negotiation process.

He told the BBC that after the 2008 financial crash, the local economy was did not fully recover when the Covid pandemic hit last year.

Sir David supported a report by the institute’s think tank ute for Government (IfG), which called on the EU and the UK to compromise on the protocol, particularly the agri-food sector.

He said Northern Ireland’s economy was “ill-equipped, to recover and a return to growth seems almost certainly to lag the rest of the UK “.

” The IfG paper by Jess Sargeant rightly recognizes that the UK government and the EU are firmly entrenched in positions Compared to the Protocol, “said Sir David.

He also called for the extension of the applicable grace period to postpone new rules for the transport of goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.

Sir David said this would” give way to explore longer-term solutions and capitalize on investment opportunities “.

” Without this, Northern Ireland appears to be in a prolonged period of political instability, poor economic performance, rising There is less tension in the community and a real risk of problems on the streets, “he said.

Earlier this week, the President of the European Commission, Ursula Von Der Leyen, aroused anger among trade unionists when she heard other EU Leaders said the protocol must be fully implemented.

David Campbell, chairman of the Loyalist Communities Council (LCC), said Ms. Von Der Leyen was like an “ostrich with her head in the sand” and warned Northern Ireland “this Summer will be in chaos “if the anger over the protocol grows.

A DUP delegation met with Lord Frost, chief negotiator for Britain’s Brexit, this week and told him that the” protocol must go “. </ The party's Westminster leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said they had a "direct and direct exchange of views on the subject".

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