DUP MP Carla Lockhart has said the continued impact of the Northern Ireland Protocol will result in much less consumer choice in supermarkets this Christmas. The MP made the comments after Marks and Spencer announced their Christmas Food to Go ordering service would not be available in Northern Ireland.
Carla Lockhart said:
“The announcement that M & S will not be offering their Christmas food ordering facility in Northern Ireland is yet another example of the impact of the Protocol, and how it is impacting people in Northern Ireland. While customers in stores in every other part of the UK will be able to avail of this service, we in Northern Ireland will not.
"While this is one example, the increasing number of services withdrawn and the reduction in choice available to people in Northern Ireland is becoming more prevalent by the day. While some political parties seem happy to just accept this, I believe it is unfair and unacceptable that my constituents are paying this price - and it is a price paid in their pocket - for the Protocol. In meetings with haulage companies in recent weeks they too have warned that it will soon become even more apparent on the shelves of supermarkets that the Protocol is causing supply issues. These are warnings the Government cannot ignore.
"We need the Government to act now. We have waited long enough for these issues to be addressed, and the impact of the Protocol on the people of Northern Ireland has been endured for too long. The clock is ticking and if resolutions are not found, then the consequences that follow have been made clear by my Party Leader. The Government and EU need to step up now and find a new way forward, or the alternative is that we all go backwards. No one wants that, especially when with the right political will solutions can be found.”