Brexit: What Scotland Thinks – major study published by Holyrood’s European Committee


A major parliamentary report detailing the views and concerns around Brexit of more than 150 Scottish organisations and individuals is published today.

Titled ‘What Scotland Thinks’, the report captures evidence from all sectors of Scottish life, from justice and education to health and human rights.

Joan McAlpine MSP, Convener of the Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Relations Committee, said:

“This report provides an invaluable insight into how Scotland sees Brexit and it is fair to say that the vast majority of the submissions expressed serious concern about its impact. Scotland thinks Brexit is bad for business and investment, bad for workers’ protection, bad for education and bad for the environment.

“There was considerable concern about leaving the single market and the customs union and the lack of certainty about what will replace them. This ranged from economic research by the Fraser of Allander Institute warning of 80,000 job losses to companies on the ground, such as one shellfish exporter dependent on the EU for 80% of its sales. The range of evidence was extraordinary and I am pleased that the committee has been able to offer people a voice.”

Lewis Macdonald MSP, Deputy Convener, said:

“Our report also sets out concerns about two further areas. Firstly, how we will be able to increase the number of economically active people in Scotland if we cannot retain and attract workers from other EU member states. Secondly, whether existing EU laws in the areas of environment, employment and social policy will be weakened or more poorly enforced.”


What Scotland Thinks is a summary of evidence and emerging issues arising from over 150 submissions received so far by the Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Relations Committee as part of its inquiry ‘The EU Referendum and its Implications for Scotland’.

The committee expects to publish further detailed reports shortly on issues such as the rights of citizens of other EU member states living and working in Scotland, and of UK nationals living abroad, as well the priorities for the UK’s and Scotland’s new trading relationship with the EU after Brexit.



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