Brexit Secretary Must Not Treat Scotland as an Afterthought

By Reporter, The HighLand Times, Monday April 16 2018

The SNP’s Joan McAlpine says David Davis must not treat Scotland as an afterthought following revelations the Brexit Secretary has only visited Scotland once since the EU referendum.

The Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union has refused the opportunity to give evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Europe committee six times since the Brexit vote – and now an FOI has revealed Mr Davis has only visited the country once since his appointment.

The Committee took the opportunity to discuss some of the major concerns about Brexit with the EU’s negotiator Michel Barnier in September 2017. 

Despite denying the existence of Brexit impact assessment papers, the UK Government’s leaked analysis revealed that Brexit could cut Scottish GDP growth by 9%, which broadly reflects the Scottish Government’s analysis that predicts that Brexit could cut Scottish GDP by as much as 8.5%. 

Joan McAlpine MSP, Convener of Holyrood’s Europe Committee said:

“David Davis cannot treat Scotland as an afterthought in these negotiations that will have a damaging and lasting impact on the Scottish economy.

“A Tory hard Brexit will mean a loss of around £12.7bn a year for the Scottish economy, the equivalent of £2,300 per year for every person in Scotland, costing potentially 80,000 jobs.

“The Tories called that analysis ‘scaremongering’ before their own leaked analysis painted a similarly bleak picture.

“The Secretary of State, who claims to be negotiating on Scotland’s behalf in Brussels, cannot turn a blind eye to the reality of the harm his decisions are going to cause the Scottish economy.

“David Davis must face questioning on how he intends to protect Scotland’s interests in EU negotiations and provide us with a guarantee that his Tory Government will not trade away Scotland’s fishing rights.

“The clock is ticking and we need answers sooner rather than later.”

 

 

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