Export strategy

Indy paper will outline plan to avoid trade barriers

Ivan McKee
Ivan McKee: focused on removing barriers (pic: Terry Murden)

A new government paper will explain how an independent Scotland will avoid trade barriers with the rest of the United Kingdom or Europe.

Trade minister Ivan McKee said at a briefing that the Government was “very focused on removing barriers”.

He said: “We’re very clear that we want Scottish businesses to be exporting internationally, within Europe and to the rest of the UK, and we’re very focused on removing barriers that get in the way of that.

“As we move forward with the discussions about an independence prospectus, we’ll clearly lay out how we see those issues being addressed so that Scottish business continues to prosper, contains to export more going forward.”

He added: “We see barriers in Europe because of Brexit. Those barriers need to be removed and we don’t want any other barriers to be put up anywhere else as a consequence of anything, so we’re very clear on that.

“As I say, the prospectus that we will bring forward on independence, it will be very clear about the steps that will be taken to do that.”

His department today updated on the Scottish Government’s export growth strategy, which stated that it had delivered an additional £3 billion in planned international sales in its first three years.

Despite criticising the impact that Brexit is having on Scotland, the Holyrood government said goods exports are growing more quickly than the UK as a whole and Scotland is also the only part of the UK with a positive trade balance in goods with the rest of the world, exporting £2.2 billion more than it imported in 2021.

Mr McKee said: “Despite unprecedented challenges for businesses and the economy, Scotland continues to punch above its weight on both exports and inward investment”

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