A meeting of the No Negotiated Outcome (NNO) Board chaired jointly by the Minister for the European Neighbourhood Wendy Morton MP and the Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia MP took place in Gibraltar on Thursday.
The role of the Board is to plan for the eventuality of no agreement on the future relationship of Gibraltar with the European Union.
The Chief Minister dropped in at the start of the meeting to welcome the Minister and the work of the Board.
Minister Morton was received at the airport by the Deputy Chief Minister and was shown around the air terminal, the land frontier area and later the container terminal at the port.
A series of infrastructure works in both places are under discussion. The proposal is for an extension to be constructed to the pedestrian entry building at the border in order to accommodate a number of automatic border control gates which could be used if there is no agreement. This is similar to what has happened on the Spanish side. In addition to this, the Customs Outfield section could be potentially relocated from its present site into this expanded building in order to make way for road works designed to improve incoming traffic flow towards the new tunnel under the runway.
This runs in parallel with discussions to upgrade and refurbish the container terminal at the port in order to accommodate the higher volume of imports expected by sea in the event of a no deal scenario. The proposal includes the resurfacing of a part of the terminal as well as electrical works designed to provide connection points for a greater number of containers carrying frozen and chilled products.
The NNO Board was briefed in detail on these two projects, the overall objective of which is to strengthen further the resilience of Gibraltar going forward. A number of mitigation options in other areas were also examined and the submissions from the NNO Working Group were reviewed.
The Government of Gibraltar, and the UK Government, remain firmly committed to the negotiation of a UK-EU treaty on the future relationship of Gibraltar based on the New Year’s Eve Agreement. However, it is sensible and prudent to plan for the eventuality of no agreement at the same time and to mitigate in those areas that are within the control of the Government.
The Minister for the European Neighbourhood invited the Deputy Chief Minister to attend a future meeting of the NNO Board in person in London.