News

Strengthening Scotland’s voice in trade deals

Published: 30 Aug 2018 11:04

Protecting the national interest.

Proposals to protect Scottish interests and values in future trade deals have been set out in a new discussion paper.

The paper argues that the current arrangements in the UK for developing and agreeing trade deals are in need of an urgent overhaul.

It makes the case for a guaranteed role for the Scottish Government and Scottish Parliament in all stages of the formulation, negotiation, agreement and implementation of such deals in the future.

Constitutional Relations Secretary Michael Russell said:

“The Scottish Government has consistently argued that the best future for Scotland and the UK is to remain in the EU, or at the least in the Single Market and Customs Union. But we must do everything we can to protect Scotland’s interests in future trade deals in all possible Brexit outcomes.

“The discussion paper makes a strong case for the Scottish Government and Scottish Parliament having a guaranteed role in the development of trade arrangements and ensuring that the views of the Scottish Parliament are respected.

“This would bring clear benefits for Scottish producers, exporters and consumers – not least protecting Scotland’s NHS from being opened up to private competition, or opening up our markets to chlorinated chicken or hormone-injected beef.”

Background

Scotland’s Role in the Development of Future UK Trade Arrangements: A Discussion Paper can be viewed here.

The main purpose of the paper is to encourage a wide ranging discussion about the best way to protect and enhance the interests of Scotland in the development of future trade deals.

It sets out arrangements in other countries for involving devolved administrations in trade agreements, such as Belgium and Canada where the benefits of involving the provinces in the recent EU-Canada trade deal were widely recognised.

The Scottish Government is currently updating its export promotion strategy.