The Scottish Centre on European Relations has published a new report which states: 1) The Scotland-rUK border poses several challenges: It would need cooperation on both sides and might look similar, despite being a land border, to the Republic of Ireland-Britain sea border… Trade barriers would be economically negative for Scotland and for rUK but how bad depends on the future UK-EU relationship…
2) Deficit and currency questions can be solved but are challenging: On the EU’s fiscal criteria, the example of Croatia shows a candidate country need not meet those criteria before joining but the deficit needs to be on a downward path and adjust rapidly once in the EU.
3) An independent Scotland would need to commit to joining the Euro.
4) Scotland would have to re-join the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).
5) Freedom, security and justice: Scotland would not have any chance of getting the sort of ‘opt-in’ to freedom, security and justice measures that the UK had.
6) An independent Scotland might, at the fastest, take 4-5 years to join from applying to negotiations to ratification. Pamela Nash, chief executive of Scotland in Union, said:
“Nobody has ever questioned that a separate Scotland could rejoin the EU, but, post-Brexit, this report lays bare the stark reality of what that now means. It would not be automatic and would take years of negotiation.
“It would result in a border with our neighbours in England. As 60 per cent of our trade with the rest of the UK this would put jobs and livelihoods at risk.
“It would require massive public spending cuts to drive down our deficit – currently the highest in Europe – at the expense of our cash-strapped schools and hospitals.
“It would mean committing to leaving the pound behind and switching to the euro, with none of the opt-outs the UK previously enjoyed as a member.
“It’s time for the SNP to be honest with voters: the best future for our country is as part of the UK, growing our economy, saving the pound, and maintaining the bonds of friendship with our friends and neighbours without building a barrier between us.”