Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain summarized the four possible areas of discussion during a debate on the Eire Act of May 5, 1938: „The first was the question of division; Second, defence; third, finances; and fourth, trade. The Sunningdale experiment of 1973 was an imaginative Anglo-Irish attempt to welcome the two national identities to Northern Ireland. Its main provisions were a decentralized assembly, a power-sharing executive and a cross-border institution, the so-called Council of Ireland. Although little provision of the agreement came into force, a power-sharing government was formed with the participation of the Official Unionist Party (OUP), the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) and the Northern Ireland Alliance (APNI). However, the executive lasted only five months due to the strike of the Ulster Workers` Council (UWC) in May 1974. The British government replied: „Northern Ireland had been an integral part of the United Kingdom for a long time and the events there were internal to the United Kingdom Government” (Hadden and Boyle 1989). The Stormont government was prorogued and direct domination of Westminster was founded in March 1972. The direct scheme was considered a temporary measure, but it has continued to this day. The Taoiseach came to its own delegation because of its position on the division in disputes. „The problem of division can only be solved with the agreement of the majority of the non-Catholic population of the North,” Finance Minister Seén MacEntee wrote on February 17, 1938 in de Valera. „It certainly cannot be solved by their coercion. So far, as a government, we have done nothing on our own to find a solution, but on the contrary, we have done and do certain things that have made the solution difficult. „Peace depends on the will of the great states,” he added. All small states can do so if the statesmen of the largest states do not do their duty to determine with determination that they do not become the instrument of great power and that they will resist with all the force they will have of any attempt to force them to wage war against their will. Contacts between the Irish and British governments continued after February 1987 as part of the formal structure of the IGC. Fears that violence in Northern Ireland would spread to Ireland as a result of closer Anglo-Irish cooperation following the agreement proved unfounded and the UUP decided to participate in new negotiations on Northern Ireland`s constitutional future in 1990/93.
After the ceasefire was announced by republican and unionist forces in 1994, the UUP reluctantly joined talks with the British and Irish governments and other political parties in Northern Ireland. No agreement was reached by all parties prior to the Good Friday Agreement of April 1998, which created the Northern Ireland Assembly and new cross-border institutions. If one of the two governments concludes that the objectives of this agreement are not being met in some respects or that a change in circumstances would require a change in their terms, the other government will immediately begin consultations with the first government upon receipt of notification and both governments will do everything in their power to find a fair solution to this problem.