The Government remains firmly of the view that the only way to ensure an orderly withdrawal is to ratify the Withdrawal Agreement, as endorsed by the European Council and agreed with the British Government. Our focus remains on securing the deal that has been reached. However, in light of ongoing uncertainty in Britain, we continue to work to prepare for the UK’s exit and contingency work has intensified. The whole-of-Government response to Brexit is being progressed through a range of cross-Departmental coordination structures. In relation to a no-deal Brexit, these include Secretary-General and Assistant Secretary Groups and a Legislation Committee, chaired by the Departments of the Taoiseach and Foreign Affairs and Trade.
While it remains difficult to fully assess the impact that Brexit will have on my Department from a resource perspective, my officials continue to engage in and monitor the progress of Brexit negotiations as well as engage in contingency planning as appropriate. My Department has assigned two additional Assistant Principal Officers from within its current staffing allocation to positions within the International Policy Division and the Permanent Representation in Brussels to support this work.
In respect of any future demands, my Department will ensure that resources are assigned in a timely manner to address any of the matters that may arise in the context of Brexit and which impact on the work and functions of my Department.