Counting the cost of Brexit


Sir, – A letter on the ESRI’s estimate of the cost of Brexit to Irish households is just the type of cynical scepticism that is at the root of populism (March 22nd). To undermine the high-quality research of the ESRI and to decry all civil servants as “Brexit-hating” is an irresponsible attack on our institutions. Populism seeks to destroy trust in the established status quo in a misguided attempt to redirect our societies into the unknown. If your letter-writer is so suspicious of our institutions, perhaps he would like to evaluate them in a credible manner? Brexit is at least a year away – and longer under a transition deal – so any evidence of its costs remain to be seen. However, it would be reckless for Irish policymakers to ignore the potential effects and to fail to arm us against a worst-case scenario – we would have no motivation for seeking solutions to the oncoming headwinds otherwise. I agree that we should temper our hysteria in relation to Brexit as I am optimistic that we can, in partnership with the EU and the UK, reach a sensible agreement. – Yours,etc,


Clontarf, Dublin 3.