Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon remains intent on taking an independent Scotland back into the EU. She wrote for Parliament Magazine in March that “Scotland’s future is in the EU” and argued “Brexit took the Scots out of the European Union against their will, but future EU membership is part of the vision for an independent Scotland.” Ms Sturgeon added: “I believe the best way to make that contribution is to regain our place in the European Union. “We didn’t want to leave in the first place and we look forward to a time when we will once again play our part in this great shared endeavour.”
One of the big debates around independence over the years has been whether Scotland could easily regain its place in the bloc.
Irish MEP Billy Kelleher told Express.co.uk there should be little opposition to Ms Sturgeon’s ambitions.
He said: “In the event of Scottish independence happening in the short term, I don’t believe there would be huge barriers to Scotland joining the EU. It would be very similar in terms of compliance, in terms of meeting standards.
“In the event of it happening, I can certainly see there will be goodwill towards Scotland joining.”
On top of this, the representative from the Fianna Fail Party in Ireland also said that Scotland shouldn’t suffer on a trading front, even if independence creates difficulties at the border.
In fact, he says Brussels could help end Scotland’s economic dependence on England and the rest of the UK.
Mr Kelleher continued: “If Scotland was to withdraw from the UK and join the EU, it would still be trading with the UK, and it will have more open trade with the EU.
“Therefore I don’t see a huge obstacle economically for Scotland from that perspective.
“There could be issues around the border in terms of free flow, but that will only come around in my view depending on the UK’s attitude. If Scotland was to join the EU the situation with the UK can be resolved with goodwill.
“It will be less dependent on England itself if it joined the EU.”
A freedom of information request to the Scottish Government confirmed no civil servants have worked on the case for independence since work was paused when the pandemic hit in March 2020.
The only piece of work undertaken by the government around independence is the draft referendum bill published in March, 2021, The Scotsman reported.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has repeatedly ruled out approving another Scottish independence referendum.