Home Secretary rejects proposal for Scots immigration system

Amber Rudd has ruled out the possibility of Scotland having its own post-Brexit immigration system.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd facing attack from SNP. Picture: AFP/Getty Images
Home Secretary Amber Rudd facing attack from SNP. Picture: AFP/Getty Images

The Home Secretary said introducing different rules “would complicate the immigration system, harming its integrity”.

SNP MP Tommy Sheppard slammed the move as foolhardy and accused Ms Rudd of showing arrogance and complacency.

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There have been growing calls in recent weeks for the government to allow Scotland to set its own immigration targets as it looks to grow its economy after the UK’s divorce from the EU. But Ms Rudd said: “Immigration remains a reserved matter and we will consider the needs of the UK as a whole. Applying different immigration rules to different parts of the UK would complicate the immigration system, harming its integrity and cause difficulties for employers who need the flexibility to deploy their staff over the UK.”

Mr Sheppard, the SNP MP for Edinburgh East, condemned the stance taken by the Home Secretary and said other countries were operating regional immigration policies.

He said during Home Office questions: “There are many large countries such as Canada and Australia which have regional variations in their immigration and visa policies to take account of diverse and complicated local economic circumstances.”