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Brexit and Europe Brexit and Europe

Maintain the Common Travel Area

Last updated: 10:18am 5 February 2019

We will maintain the Common Travel Area and maintain as frictionless a border as possible for people, goods and services between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.36

Our verdict

The Common Travel Area (CTA) is an open borders area comprising the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Ireland, the Isle of Man, and the Channel Islands. The British Overseas Territories are not included. (Wikipedia). Within the CTA, citizens can move across borders with minimal passport controls.

The Common Travel Area is an example of the special status of Irish citizens in UK law, and the government is committed to protecting it. The government’s guidance paper states that “rights enjoyed by British and Irish citizens under the CTA are protected after the UK leaves the EU”.

With this in mind, and because this is a promise to continue doing something, we are marking this policy is ‘done’. We’ll revisit this status if there are any surprises in the final Brexit deal – especially around the border in Ireland. Follow this policy for updates.

Maintain the detail

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There's always room for debate

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