Internal Market

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 30th July 2020.

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Photo of Murdo Fraser Murdo Fraser Conservative

I thank the cabinet secretary for providing advance sight of his statement, but any hopes that he would drop his hysterical and misleading rhetoric on this issue have been quickly dispelled.

The UK internal market is vital for Scottish business and the economy, and supports more than 500,000 jobs. Scottish producers need to be able to sell to our largest marketplace—the rest of the UK—without restriction or barriers to trade.

Sadly, the Scottish Government does not seem to understand that simple point. It would rather engage in constitutional grievance mongering than consider what is best for jobs. What we have heard from the cabinet secretary today simply reinforces the view of one of his Government’s own economic advisers that there is no one in its ranks who understands business or the economy.

I have two questions for the cabinet secretary. First, not one Scottish National Party politician has been able to give a simple example of a power that is currently exercised by this Parliament that will be taken away by the proposals in question. There was nothing about that in the statement. Can the cabinet secretary do any better? Secondly, can he confirm that the SNP wants to see every last one of the powers that we are talking about returned to Brussels at the first opportunity?