Independence in Europe Will Unlock Scotland’s Potential Launched to Inform Debate

Brexit continues to cause severe economic decline across Scotland and the UK, even three years since the UK formally left the EU, argues SNP Europe and EU Accession Spokesperson Alyn Smith MP. To inform and drive public debate, Mr Smith has launched to serve as a one-stop-shop for information about independence in Europe.

According to the OECD, the UK economy in the third quarter of 2022 declined by -0.3%, compared to the Eurozone which grew by 0.3%.  France grew by 0.2% and Germany grew by 0.4%. 

With a declining economy, the UK experienced similar inflation levels to the EU (10.5% and 10.4% respectively).

For 2023, the OECD is forecasting a further decline of the UK economy by -0.4%, with the Eurozone growing by a projected 0.5%.

Alyn Smith MP, SNP spokesperson for Europe and EU Accession said: 

‘I’ve launched because Scots have a real choice to make – independence in Europe putting rocket boosters on our recovery or sticking with the UK, the sick man of Europe.

‘Nations across the world are experiencing a slowing in economic growth because of the pandemic and war in Ukraine but only the UK inflicted Brexit on itself as well. 

‘OECD figures show that, compared to three years ago, the UK economy has declined by -0.8%, which is immediately hitting our public finances and ability to maintain key public services.  Meanwhile, the Eurozone grew by 2.2%.

‘Leaving the EU in the way we did has stifled the whole of the UK from being able to weather the various storms that have come our way over the last three years.  For Scotland, which voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU, this isn’t just economic vandalism from Westminster, but a democratic affront too.

‘This is having a severe impact on every aspect of our lives; from how far the money in our bank goes, to the ability of national governments to properly fund lifeline services like our NHS.

‘The Tories and Labour are completely aligned on this, so no change of government in London will forge a better future for Scotland.  Both Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer want to keep the UK out of the EU and the single market.

‘As we contemplate this three-year anniversary, we should ask ourselves why no advocate of leaving the EU wants to talk in any real way about the benefits doing so has brought the UK – because there are none. 

‘For Scots, the choice is clear: we either sit tight and let Westminster governments drive us down their road with a slow puncture, or we choose independence, join our European neighbours, and put rocket boosters on our economy – improving livelihoods and public services.’

Notes: Economic growth across EU since Brexit:

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