Anglesey Council has warned ”increased barriers and red tape” between Wales and Ireland will ”not benefit anyone” after Brexit.
It follows talks in Dublin between a group of island delegates and top officials, including the former Lord Mayor and Owen Keegan, the city council’s chief executive.
Both groups said there was a consensus that new customs arrangements after the UK leaves the European Union ”must facilitate and enable trade and movement”.
The deputy leader of Anglesey Council, Ieuan Williams, said: ”The future of the customs union is uncertain, but we must all prepare to deliver the agreed changes with a view to minimising the barriers to trade and movement between Dublin and Holyhead. Time is limited, and we need systems to be agreed and in place as soon as possible.”
At the referendum in June 2016, Anglesey narrowly voted in favour of leaving the European Union by 715 votes. But neighbouring Gwynedd voted to remain by over 9,800 votes, bucking the national trends.
Earlier this year, the council backed a motion pledging support for the free border between the UK and Ireland to continue. The Dublin summit, held as a result of the motion from Holyhead independent councillor Robert Llewellyn Jones, agreed on maintaining links to help boost mutual trade, tourism and cultural benefits.
Mícheál Mac Donncha, who was the Lord Mayor of Dublin until last week, said: ”This was an important engagement between the City of Dublin and the Isle of Anglesey. We share great concern at the implications of Brexit for both Wales and Ireland generally, and for Holyhead and Dublin, in particular. We are committed to building on the many existing ties between us in order to successfully meet the challenge and opportunities ahead.”
Mr Mac Donncha, a Sinn Fein city councillor, was succeeded in the mayoral role last week by independent councillor Nial Ring.
Among the Anglesey delegates, the member for economic development, Councillor Carwyn Jones, said the partnership between Dublin and Anglesey ”must continue”. He added: ”The historic, cultural, and economic ties between us must be built upon to create a prosperous future. We are committed to ensuring trade, travel, and tourism continues to grow and flourish in the future.”
”Dublin, one of the most diverse and friendly capital cities in the world is only 51 miles away. The changes ahead must be embraced together.”