May 28, 2022

According to economists, an independent Scotland would be better off staying out of the EU to avoid a tight border with England.

In a new report on the possible effects of the split from the Scots, the Economic Observatory think tank highlighted how the rest of the UK would remain Scotland’s “most important trading partner”.


The think tank sheds light on how the rest of the UK will remain Scotland’s ‘most important trading partner’.Credit: Getty
A former SNP minister warned that Ms Sturgeon would lose IndyRef2 if she joined the EU.


A former SNP minister warned that Ms Sturgeon would lose IndyRef2 if she joined the EU.Credit: PA

He warned that EU membership could come at the cost of a trade border with England, which would increase the cost of doing business between the two countries.

The report states: “If Scotland rejoins the EU, its border with the rest of the UK will become one of the EU’s external borders.

“Since the UK is no longer part of the EU’s single market or customs union, this means that cross-border trade will be subject to customs checks and other border restrictions.

“In addition, physical border infrastructure will likely be needed at the crossing points between Scotland and England.”

He warned that “if Scotland rejoins the EU, it will be in a common market with the rest of the UK.”

The authors added: “An independent Scotland will face trade. A good rule of thumb is that borders are less expensive when they affect less trade.

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“This shows that as long as the rest of the UK remains Scotland’s most important trading partner, it would be better for Scotland to prioritize integration with the rest of the UK, which means that from the EU. Stay out.”

Nicola Sturgeon has repeatedly said she wants a second independence referendum by the end of 2023 – and has said she wants an Indo-Scotland to rejoin the European Union.

The first minister had earlier cast Northern Ireland as a template on how Scotland could manage cross-border trade after a vote of yes.

But Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit arrangements – which have seen them keep trade open with the Republic of Ireland, which is in the European bloc but forced to do customs checks from elsewhere in the UK – Have been the subject of controversy.

Sturgeon called for tackling “maladministration” within the party as the SNP MSP laughed at a TV reporter’s claim of “abuse” in Scotland.

This comes after a former SNP minister warned last week that Ms Sturgeon would lose IndyRef2 in the future if she tried to join the EU.

Nets Grande Alex Neal, who voted to leave in the 2016 Bridget referendum, said it would be tantamount to signing a “blank check” for Brussels.

A spokesman for the SNP said: “The Scottish people voted overwhelmingly to stay in the EU but were still dragged out against our will.

“Bridget is now making us all poorer – it has hurt Scotland’s key industries immensely and has led to labor and supply shortages throughout the economy.

“Independence gives the people of Scotland a chance to recover from the damage done by Brexit.

“An independent Scotland could rejoin the world’s largest trading bloc – the EU single market – which is seven times larger than the UK in terms of population, and could take advantage of the wealth opportunities that make up our trade. Diversification can result. “

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