Statement following JMC (EN)

9 Nov 2016 02:33 PM

Speaking after today’s meeting of the Joint Ministerial Committee (EU Negotiations) in London, the Scottish Government Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe, Michael Russell said:

“Our goal in these discussions is always to protect Scotland’s interests.

“I made it absolutely clear that membership of the Single Market and the benefits that flow from it, including free movement of labour, is essential for the economic prosperity of Scotland.

“Although it is good that the process of involving the Scottish Government and the other devolved administrations is underway, more than four months after the referendum the UK Government has still not made its strategic intentions clear.

“There was a discussion over EU market access but we do not know whether UK ministers want to remain inside the Single Market or the Customs Union. This will remain a considerable problem as we continue to promote the interests of Scotland.

“The UK Government must provide greater clarity and transparency on its intentions.

“At the Downing Street meeting two weeks ago the First Minister insisted the views of the devolved governments, expressed at these meetings, must be part of the UK’s negotiation position.

“A further meeting will be held next month and I look forward to receiving greater clarity from the UK on these substantial issues as we continue to put forward proposals that are best for Scotland.”