A note on Scottish Independence

Kelly Ed article for Irish Voice

Edward Kelly, of the  Humbert School

The intervention of former European Council president, Donald Tusk, may mark a significant moment in the on-going debate on Scottish independence as may the European Parliament’s decision to choose a politician of mixed Scottish-German origin from Germany’s CDU as its coordinator for post-Brexit relations with Britain depending on his personal views on the matter.

With regard to fisheries, it’s worth noting that an independent Scotland would automatically take most of the UK’s fishing waters with the power to block English boats from access to these waters if it so desired which would create a lot more room for Scottish fishermen.

Even Michael Gove’s family might find this quite an appealing prospect.

Moreover, in the event of EU entry, Scotland would automatically have the right to nominate a full member of the EU commission whose role would be a matter for negotiations between the Scottish government and the commission president. Usually, in such negotiations, the commission president tries to accommodate the wishes of the government concerned which would make it possible for the new Scottish commissioner to be put in charge of EU fisheries with the power to initiate changes in EU fisheries policy should he or she so wish.

This may be a way of reassuring Scottish fishermen about the question of an independent Scotland re-entering the EU. Certainly, it would make for some interesting negotiations about fishing between the EU and the residual UK government with Boris Johnson spluttering over his cornflakes.

The other maritime issue which could arise would be a demand by an independent Scottish government for the immediate withdrawal of Royal Navy nuclear submarines from the Clyde. Finding an alternative location in England or South Wales may prove difficult. This would certainly lead to more than cornflakes spluttering in Downing Street.

Ed Kelly,  Humbert International Summer School,  Co Mayo, Ireland


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