News

Brexit deal rejected

Published: 30 Dec 2020 16:00

Scottish Parliament does not give consent to damaging deal.

The UK Government’s damaging Brexit trade deal does not have the consent of the Scottish Parliament.

MSPs backed the Scottish Government’s Legislative Consent Memorandum, which says the deal will have “a severe detrimental impact on Scotland” and that leaving the EU is a “mistake of historic significance”.

The constitutional convention is that the Westminster Parliament should not legislate in devolved areas without the Scottish Parliament’s consent – and the UK Government’s trade deal affects multiple areas of devolved responsibility.

While the trade deal has been given consent at Westminster, the Scottish Parliament vote underlined that Scotland did not vote for Brexit, nor leaving the single market and customs union and losing the many benefits that membership of the European Union brings.

Scottish Government modelling estimates that a deal of the type that has been agreed could cut Scotland’s GDP by around 6.1% (£9 billion in 2016 cash terms) by 2030 compared to EU membership.

The economy and businesses will face the impacts of the higher costs of trying to access EU markets, and justice and security cooperation will be seriously affected.

Scotland and its students will no longer be able to participate in Erasmus, and reduced EU migration will also have a significant negative impact on the economy, on population levels and on wider society and culture.

Far from having substantial increased opportunities in the future, it will also mean a fall in the quantity of some key fishing stocks landed by the Scottish fleet.

Constitution Secretary Michael Russell said:

“The Scottish Parliament has backed this government’s position: saying No to a hard Brexit deal that will do enormous damage to our economy, our society and to the opportunities of this and future generations.

“But, as it has done so throughout the Brexit process the UK Government will ignore the Scottish Parliament. This means in two days’ time Scotland will be forced out of the European Single Market and Customs Union, hitting the economy and jobs at the worst possible time.

“The Scottish Government will now do everything we can to mitigate the damage that will be caused.

“And we will continue to stick by our principles, our values and our beliefs - and we will stick by the people of Scotland, who have opposed Brexit at every turn.

“It is therefore more important than ever that people in Scotland have the right to choose the best deal of all – a future as an independent country and equal partner inside the European Union.”

Background

Read the Legislative Consent Memorandum, and the Scottish Government's initial analysis of the deal.

The Scottish Government has published analysis of the deal on fishing which shows for some key Scottish stocks the UK deal is worse for the industry than the EU Common Fisheries Policy.

The damaging impact of the deal has been outlined by the Scottish Government.

The Scottish Government has put in place a series of measures to help protect health services, the economy and communities from the impact of the deal.