The Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon called on prime minister Theresa May to work on a “Plan B” on Brexit negotiations.
Sturgeon said that Theresa May’s Brexit plan “seems to be dead,” telling the media that the no-deal scenario is “catastrophic.” The statement comes while Trade Secretary Liam Fox says that a no-deal scenario is the most likely outcome of negotiations with Brussels, while the Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney says there is an “uncomfortably high” probability of no deal.
In any event, “I hope she will outline her plan B, because we cannot simply take a step off that Brexit cliff-edge next March without knowing what comes next,” Sturgeon said, calling for a clear outline of Plan B.
Ms May was in Edinburgh on Tuesday to sign a deal for government co-funding of research in space, life sciences and agriculture; it should have been a happy affair, except Brexit is deeply divisive. May called on her host to refrain from sowing division over Brexit and get behind the British negotiating position, arguing that “a good deal for the UK is a good deal for Scotland.”
Theresa May set the UK and the EU into a cost-benefit analysis balance, reminding the Scottish audience that trade with the UK’s internal market is “four times” more significant than trade with the EU. Nicola Sturgeon has made clear that the nature of Brexit will determine whether or not she calls a second referendum on Scottish independence.
May insists that her White Paper ensures an end to free movement, the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice, while protecting jobs.
The UK government is at odds with the Scottish government, as Edinburgh accuses London of a backdoor recentralization campaign, as EU repatriated powers are centralized rather devolved.