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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5W-19770: Willie Coffey (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley)

Scottish National Party

Date lodged: 5 November 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what the economic impact would be on Scotland of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of the Ireland.

Answered by: Michael Russell 13 November 2018

A hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland would be the likely result of a Brexit agreement that resulted in the United Kingdom being outside of the European Single Market and Customs Union. The economic implication of such a scenario would be to introduce considerable additional costs for businesses across the UK seeking to trade with the EU. In addition to this, it would also cause considerable disruption to the supply chains that currently exist between Scottish businesses in Ireland and across the EU.

Scottish Government analysis published in Scotland’s Place in Europe: People, Jobs and Investment, assessed the implications for Scotland’s economy if the UK exits the European Union. The analysis indicates that a hard Brexit could lead to a loss of up to 8.5% of GDP (or £12.7 billion in 2016 terms) in Scotland by 2030 – equivalent to £2,300 per individual.