Scotland: Expert discusses country’s hopes to rejoin EU
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Senior Fellow at the think tank Centre for Brexit Policy and economic Catherine Mcbride argued “it makes little sense for Scotland to leave the UK”. During an interview with Express.co.uk, she noted that if Nicola Sturgeon was somehow able to get independence for Scotland, they would not be able to join the EU any time soon. She highlighted the extreme debt Scotland holds and how it makes it ineligible to join the bloc.
Ms Mcbride said: “Scotland expects to be let into the EU but the EU has very strict rules for new entrance.
“They would have to agree to join the Euro eventually and the Euro has very strict criteria.
“At the moment you must have a budget deficit of less than 3 percent of your GDP and a national debt of below 60 percent of GDP.
“Now Scotland’s budget deficit is almost 9 percent of GDP and Scotland’s share of the UK’s liabilities would be about 200 percent of Scottish GDP.
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“Scotland is nowhere near the criteria to join the Euro and the EU.”
Ms Mcbride noted that the SNP is aware of the economic difficulties the nation would be in with an attempt to join the bloc.
She said: “Even the SNP’s own growth commission report predicted that Scotland would need to have 10 years of austerity to meet the EU’s criteria for entry.
“The Institute of Government thinks they would have to wait 10 years to join the EU so they didn’t upset Spain.
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“I think Scotland leaving the Union will be very difficult after 400 years.
“That is ten times as long as the UK was part of the EU.
“Most of our trade was outside of the EU and yet Scotland’s trade was with the UK.
“I think it would be a very difficult process of extracting Scotland from the Union.”
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Ms Mcbride concluded that even looking beyond economics there were issues with Scotland cutting ties with the United Kingdom.
She said: “That is just looking at the economics, obviously there is a huge number of historical and cultural ties between the two countries.
“There are a huge number of Scottish people that live in England and English people that live in Scotland as well as Welsh and Northern Irish people as well.
“There is all of that, but just on economic terms it makes little sense that they would actually leave.”
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