On 22 February 2019 and with an apparently heavy heart, the Irish deputy Prime Minister, Simon Coveney,  unveiled a new Irish Government Bill to deal with the consequences of a "No Deal" Brexit from an Irish perspective.

The Bill runs to some 70 pages  and deals with a number of subjects drawn from the work of nine Irish Government Departments, including:-

Justice - preserving existing extradition arrangements between the UK and Ireland;

Health - enabling UK and Irish citizens to continue to access services in the other's jurisdiction;

Social welfare- providing for pensions and other benefits to continue to be paid;

Energy - enabling the Irish Commission for the Regulation of Utilities to to deal with unusual market activity on the all - Irekand electricity network; and

Transport - permitting cross-border rail and bus services to continue.

There was favourable comment from a leading member  ( Sammy Wilson) of the Northern Ireland Democratic Unionist Party ( DUP) that the Bill contains no provisions for customs checkpoints at the Irish border -  a good omen for the future in the hope that cross- border trade will not be impeded.

The Irish deputy Prime Minister hoped that the Bill would simply "sit on the shelf" and   be unnecessary to implement in practice, on the ground, which is widely shared, that a "disorderly" Brexit would be a "lose, lose, lose" for the UK, the EU and the Republic of Ireland.

Ireland's work on preparing for a "No Deal" complements work done  by  the UK and the EU separately and is clearly a prudent step in a currently unresolved situation.