Sturgeon pitches for Scottish place in EEA

Sturgeon pitches for Scottish place in EEA

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon went to great lengths to separate Brexit issues from the little question of independence  when she launched “Scotland’s Place In Europe”. The first political message was that this mess is not of Scotland’s making and  it was up to Theresa May to sort it out in a democratically acceptable fashion. But her main pitch was for Scotland to be able to keep a foot in Europe no matter which way the UK as a whole headed.

The Guardian summarised: “At the heart of the paper is a Norway-style framework to maintain Scotland’s place within the single market – even if the rest of the UK opts for a hard Brexit – by becoming a full or associate member of the European Free Trade Association (Efta) and thereafter becoming party to Efta’s European Economic Area (EAA) agreement.”One wonders if she has been taking soundings across the North Sea. Some in London still hope that the whole UK can take the EFTA/EEA route but there are reports that Norway is alarmed and may veto British EFTA membership. Given their old Shetland/Orkney relations perhaps the Norwegians would take a kinder view of Scottish membership