Scotland in Europe Update: 13th December 2019

After three and half years of chaos, ineptitude and the dawning realisation that Brexit will be neither what was promised, nor will it be finished any time soon, the people of the UK still elected a Tory government.

That means that the SNP’s MEPs will come back to Scotland soon, for the last time as part of the UK.

As the fog clears on the morning after the night before, there is a twinkle of good news for Scotland within the devasting news from the rest of the UK. The SNP – a pro-Remain party – won 48 out of the 59 seats in Scotland.

From Scotland, we have sent a very clear message – we don't want a Boris Johnson government and we don't want to leave the EU.

Alyn has been elected as Member of the Westminster Parliament for beautiful Stirling, the heart of Scotland. He would like to thank all of his activists and supporters, and everyone who voted for him. He’ll not let you down as he takes his years of European experience to Westminster.

Back in Brussels it has also been a big week. The Commission unveiled their plans for a European Green Deal for the EU and its citizens. This is just the beginning of the journey towards a carbon neutral future, and a just transition must be our guiding light throughout that period.

The European Green Deal has the potential to not only transform our economy and society but also to fundamentally repurpose our economy into one that delivers a better quality of life for all of Europe's citizens and to do so in a way that is sustainable, fair, just and leaves no one behind. Instead, we’re being dragged over the edge of the cliff by the Tories.

The EU is the obvious platform to deliver a better future and Scotland is keen to play its part from inside the EU, something that is going to be denied to us early next year. Scotland must be given a say about our future. This is now a straightforward choice between the Tory Brexit Britain or an independent Scotland as a member of the European Union.



You can read the technical details of the Green New deal from the Commission here.

The European Parliament also made a handy guide.

And the European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen wrote down her thoughts on the deal in the Guardian.

The deal gave fresh impetus to the COP25 talks in Madrid

At this week’s meeting the European Council endorses the objective of achieving a climate-neutral EU by 2050, in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement.

In a disgusting speech before being re-elected PM Boris Johnson said that for too long EU migrants have “treat[ed] the UK as if it’s part of their own country”.

But as Alyn said before, if you choose to make your home in Scotland, this is your country. We know that EU nationals have been made to feel unwelcome but please be assured that we want you here, and will be working hard to protect you.

As Christian said, the fight’s not over yet.

The other big news was that WTO Appellate Body stopped functioning due to the US blocking the appointment of judges. There is a good explainer of what this means here from Bruegel, unfortunately it is not straightforward but that Brexiters think we can rely on the WTO framework as a stable structure is laughable.

The Commission is already ahead of the game and Commissioner for Trade Phil Hogan released a statement explaining the EU’s proposed interim appeal arrangements to those partners who are willing to continue to resolve disputes in a binding way in respect of the WTO rules.

UK Trade Policy Observatory Published a number of important articles this week. Firstly, this showing that 75% of goods imported into Northern Ireland under Boris Johnson’s deal would have tariffs applied.

And secondly this on the merits of a US trade deal:
“US does yield benefits to the UK, but compared to the loss from leaving the EU these are much smaller. It is also worth noting that while there is a gain to the UK as a whole from signing a trade agreement with the US, this does not mean that all sectors in all regions gain. Agriculture and food processing production decline by more as a result of an agreement with the US in all the regions of the UK; there are five regions where manufacturing output sees a further decline.”

Finally this year’s Sakharov Prize will be given to Ilham Tohti, an advocate of the rights of the Uyghur minority and of dialogue with the Han majority in China.