The UK government has been attacked by Labour for failing to provide assurances that Scotland will be able to access funds from the European Investment Bank (EIB) after Brexit.
In response to a series of parliamentary questions from Labour MP Ian Murray, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Liz Truss, declined to confirm that Scotland would still be able to get EIB cash.
Over the past decade, the EIB has provided more than £3 billion for direct investment in Scotland, with additional investment from UK wide programmes.
In 2016, the EIB announced a £200 million loan for Edinburgh University, which represented the EIB’s largest ever loan for a European university. The university also received a £50m EIB loan five years ago. The bank has also invested in health, transport and education infrastructure projects financing the construction of hospitals, motorways and schools throughout Scotland.
Murray said: “The European Investment Bank acts as a catalyst for large-scale infrastructure projects across Scotland and the UK. Scotland has received over £3bn in direct financing over the last decade, including record support for Edinburgh University, and financing for hospitals, colleges, and major transport projects.
“Losing access to the EIB would be very damaging. It could lead to investment in Scotland being significantly reduced.”
A Treasury spokesman said Chancellor Philip Hammond had acknowledged the importance of EIB funding, but said the future relationship between the UK and the bank would be determined during the Brexit negotiations. He added that the government would not be providing a “running commentary” on the talks.