Brussels has warned that it will soon begin litigation after the UK has unilaterally postponed the implementation of the Northern Ireland part of the Brexit agreement, The Guardian reported.
European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic said the UK government's announcement on Wednesday was a very negative surprise.
Cabinet Minister David Frost said the UK is extending a series of grace periods designed to facilitate trade between Northern Ireland, which remains in the EU's single market for goods, and the UK, pending agreements pending.
He provoked an outraged backlash in Brussels when the EU accused the UK of abandoning its treaty obligations under the EU exit agreement, designed to ensure that the hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic does not return.
In an interview with the Financial Times, Sefcovic, who is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the agreement, said that the European Commission is now working on infringement proceedings in relation to the UK.
Northern Ireland's withdrawal protocol means bringing Northern Ireland in line with various EU rules requiring the verification of goods entering the region from the UK.