Dublin announced it has ramped up its readiness for a no deal Brexit and has urged businesses to prepare to implement their contingency plans. Addressing reporters in Dublin on Wednesday, Mr Varadkar said: “A no deal scenario would not protect the peace in Northern Ireland so we have to work hard to avoid it. At the same time, our plans for a no deal exit will continue. These are no longer contingency plans. They are being implemented by the Government.
“Now, businesses and other organisations, if they are not doing so, must do the same.
“For governments, this involves legislation including the omnibus Brexit bill. Preparations at our ports and airports for customs and SPS checks.
“Contingency plans to ensure that medical supplies are not interrupted and further plans to support exporters, businesses and employers who may be affected severely.
“We should never forget that Brexit is a British policy that originated in Westminster. After months of negotiations, we found a solution. That solution has now been rejected by Westminster.”
Mr Varadkar added: “A no-deal scenario would have a deeply negative impact on jobs on the economy, particularly the traded and agri-food sectors, our farmers and fishermen, our rural economy, our businessmen and women all over the country.”
The House of Commons rejected Prime Minister Theresa May’s deal by 432 votes to 202 with more than 100 Tory MPs voting against their own party.
The Irish border backstop remains to be the key sticking point for many Brexiteers who fear the arrangement could keep the UK trapped in a customs union with the EU indefinitely.
Following the vote, opponents insisted the defeat was proof that the EU must accept the removal of the backstop.
Democratic Unionist leader Arlene Foster said: “The House of Commons has sent an unmistakable message to the Prime Minister and the European Union that this deal is rejected.
“Mrs May will now be able to demonstrate to the Brussels negotiators that changes are required if any deal is to command the support of Parliament.
“We will work with the Government constructively to achieve a better deal. That is our focus. Whilst some may wish to use this defeat to boost their political ambitions, we will give the Government the space to set out a plan to secure a better deal.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn also launched a bid to oust the Government after Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement was overwhelmingly rejected.
Mrs May is now fighting to retain her place as Prime Minister while attempting to find a Brexit compromise that could command majority support in the Commons.
The Prime Minister faces a vote of no confidence on Wednesday after suffering a massive parliamentary defeat over her controversial EU withdrawal plans.
Mr Corbyn insisted he was tabling the no-confidence motion in the Government because Mrs May’s “catastrophic” Brexit defeat represented an “absolutely decisive” verdict by MPs on the Prime Minister’s handling of EU withdrawal.
But both the DUP and many Pro-Europe wings of the Tory party have said they would back Mrs May in the confidence vote.