The Conservative Government must take the threat of a no deal Brexit off the table in order to protect the success of Scotland’s multi-billion pound food and drink sector.
Analysis published by the UK Government outlines that a no-deal “impact on the UK’s agriculture, forestry of fishing industries would have particular effects in Scotland”, with these three industries accounting for 1.21% of Scotland’s economy, compared to 0.46% of England’s.
The analysis states that food and drink exports, including premium iconic Scottish produce like whisky, beef, langoustines and salmon, are as a whole approximately 4 times more important to the Scottish economy than for the UK as a whole.
The Scottish food and drink industry has assessed that leaving the EU without a deal will result in the loss of £2 billion sales annually - based on the UK Government’s own economic projections.
Speaking today (Wednesday 27th February), Mr Wishart said:
“The UK government’s latest Brexit analysis shows that Scotland’s economy will be slashed by 8% in the event of no deal, but Theresa May’s bad Brexit deal would also be devastating for the Scottish economy, as well as putting Scotland at a competitive disadvantage to Northern Irish fishing boats and farmers.
“Food producers, farmers and other exporters in Perthshire are rightly fearful of the prospect of no deal. Businesses in my constituency have already been told that they haven’t secured the relevant permissions to continue to drive HGVs into the EU 27 after the end of March. That isn’t scaremongering, they have already been written to by the UK Government to say that they were not successful in securing a permit.
“The Prime Minister has refused to rule out a no deal Brexit, despite having the power to do so. The SNP are committed to work with others to ensure that no deal is taken off the table despite the Prime Minister’s intransigence.”