The finance minister said he believed a Brexit deal that saw the UK enter into a temporary agreement with EU while future relationships were negotiated could still be feasible. However, he said that no deal was still a “credible threat” to the future of Ireland. Trepidation has mounted about the likelihood of a no deal Brexit scenario at the end of October.
Speaking on BBC Newsnight, Mr Donohoe said: “I believe that a no deal Brexit and the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a deal is a very credible and material risk now.”
“I believe that Prime Minister Johnson feels differently about the relationship between the UK and the EU and the future trust of that relationship to how Prime Minister May did.
“I feel that has added a new dynamic into where we are on Brexit.”
Mr Donohoe shared his recognition of the effects a no deal Brexit could have on Ireland with presenter Emily Maitlis.
He said: “I have a real direct appreciation of what a no deal Brexit could mean for the island of Ireland and the Irish economy.
“As someone who lived in the UK and has deep links with the UK, I know what the consequences of Brexit could be.”
He told Ms Maitlis that he could “look you in the eye and say that the EU and the Irish government have been engaging with each other now for three years”.
He added that it was “absolutely not a case of the EU constraining our ability to deal with Brexit”.
Sajid Javid, the UK’s chancellor, met his Irish counterpart to discuss Brexit after Mr Donohoe travelled to London yesterday on a “working visit”.
He told Mr Javid Ireland had no intentions of removing the backstop from the Brexit agreement.
He went on to claim the backstop was the best way of avoiding a hard border in Ireland.
The pair also met to discuss current international economic developments.
Mr Donohoe previously said he was looking forward to meeting Mr Javid and maintaining close ties with the British Government.