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Scotland to unveil single market Brexit plan

Staff Writer | December 19, 2016
Scotland will publish proposals this week for how it can remain in the European Union's single market after Britain leaves the bloc.
Michael Russell
Exit   To avoid the national disaster
It will do that in order to avoid the "national disaster" of a "hard Brexit", the Scottish government said.

While the United Kingdom as a whole voted to leave the EU in June, Scotland strongly backed remaining in the bloc.

"We will set out compromise proposals which, while not conferring the full benefits of EU membership, would mitigate the Brexit damage," said Michael Russell, the Scottish government's minister for EU negotiations.

"At the heart of our plan is a framework to keep Scotland's place in the European single market."

Russell said such a plan faced "complexities" but a "hard Brexit" threatened 80,000 Scottish jobs over a decade.

"That would be a national disaster for Scotland," he said. "Brexit presents everyone with an unprecedented challenge, and with political goodwill on all sides and a willingness to cooperate, these proposals can effect a solution for Scotland."

The plans also will outline further "substantial" new powers that should be handed to the devolved parliament in Edinburgh post-Brexit.