In a Brexit declaration the Cross-Frontier Group has demanded that the rights of citizens on both sides of the border be safeguarded in the process of negotiations. It has called for an end to the “climate of uncertainty that exists which has a negative impact on citizens’ expectations for the future development and economic cooperation of the region.”
The declaration – which considers the consequences of Brexit on relations between the Campo and Gibraltar – states that the CFG was formed in 2013 with the central objective to defend the common interests of the citizens on both sides of the frontier.
The CFG holds the firm conviction that dialogue and cooperation are essential for the continued social and economic development of both communities.
Defending and promoting a freely flowing frontier was the first priority for the CFG when it was established. Subsequently other objectives have been adopted by the Group, such as the move to create an Economic Group of Territorial Cooperation (EGTC).
Since its formation, the CFG said it has become the leading interlocutor for those organisations and institutions representing employers and employees on both sides of the frontier.
The interaction between the economies of Gibraltar and the Campo de Gibraltar is directly responsible for creating thousands of jobs for Spanish and other EU citizens, the Group states.
“The region also generates considerable business for hundreds of Spanish companies which provide services to the Rock. Similarly, Gibraltar residents generate considerable additional business for hundreds of small businesses in the region, particularly in La Linea.”
“The United Kingdom’s decision to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty leading to its departure from the EU has increased the level of uncertainty in the Campo region.”
The Group believes that it will be essential to monitor the Brexit negotiations closely, paying particular attention to those measures which are likely to affect relations between Gibraltar and the Campo de Gibraltar.
The CFG said it has an important role to play during the Brexit negotiating process, being the only non-political representative of employer and employee groups in the region.
In this context, the Group vowed to continue to defend citizens’ interests on both sides of the frontier in the months and years ahead.
In a list of priorities the CFG also lists the calls upon those responsible, “that the outcome of these negotiations will allow the continuation the family, social and business ties that bond these communities.”
It further highlighted the need that the new framework of cross border relations needs to support the development of both Gibraltar and the Campo. It added that a freely-flowing frontier needs to be maintained so as to maintain and develop existing business, family and social ties.
The Group also called upon the governments to ensure that the frontier flow remains normal throughout the negotiating process and that neither side uses it as leverage.
It pledges that relevant politicians and institutions are kept informed about public opinion on these matters.