Holyrood will be ‘more powerful than ever’ after Brexit

The Scottish Parliament will be "more powerful than ever" when the Brexit transition period expires at the end of the year, MSPs heard today.

Holyrood will be "more powerful than ever" after Brexit
Holyrood will be "more powerful than ever" after Brexit

The Tories have also claimed that SNP plans to rejoin the EU after independence would mark a "power surrender" as controls are handed back to Brussels.

MSPs at Holyrood today debated UK Government plans to implement a UK internal market after Brexit when the jurisdiction of the EU single market ceases apply. Westminster says it is necessary to ensure consistency of standards and regulations in the trade of goods throughout the UK.

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But Nationalists have branded the plans an attack on devolution, as it cuts across areas like environmental controls which fall under Holyrood's remit.

Scottish Government Europe minister Jenny Gilruth warned that the implications will "disastrous for devolution."

"The Conservatives are kidding themselves if they can't see how it undermines the very foundations of devolution," Ms Gilruth tolds MSPs.

"This Parliament's wishes and the democratic wishes of the people of Scotland will be undermined and overridden. The Scottish Government will not stand for it."

But claims of an attack on devolution were dismissed by Tory Constitution spokesman Dean Lockhart who insisted that when Brexit is fully realised Holyrood will be handed a range of new controls.

"At the end of the transition period the Scottish Parliament will enjoy a power surge - making this Parliament more powerful than ever," he insisted.

This will include more than 100 powers being repatriated from the EU which will come to Scotland for the first time.

And he warned that SNP plans to rejoin the EU after independence - and see these powers go back to Brussels - would mark the "biggest power surrender this Parliament has ever seen."

Mr Lockhart also pointed to an increasing number of powers which have been transferred to Holyrood.

"Over the past decade, the UK Conservative Government has transferred unprecedented powers to this Parliament, including areas in taxation, 11 different welfare powers - although they're not used by the SNP - and areas covering consumer protection," he added.

"That's what real devolution looks like."

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