Scottish Labour’s Shadow Minister for Europe and International Development Anne McTaggart this week argued the case for Scotland’s continued membership of the EU and warned of the dangers of withdrawal under a Conservative Government.
Ms McTaggart spoke out during a debate at the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday 17th March on ‘Scotland’s place in Europe’.
The Glasgow MSP highlighted the significant benefits of EU membership to Scotland, including being part of the world’s largest single market which accounts for around £200 billion of exports and nearly £450 billion in investments each year.
Ms McTaggart also argued that the EU needs to be doing more to address precarious employment situations, such as zero-hour contracts which affect nearly 1.4 million UK workers.
Speaking in the debate Ms McTaggart said “At a time when countries are fighting for their right to be part of Europe and clinging on to the EU, the Conservative Party is threatening to pull the UK out of Europe. Membership of the EU gives us many benefits, and leaving it would only be detrimental to that prosperity.
“Our place in the world is not defined by being a part of Europe but it is strengthened by it. The key is to keep the UK in the EU and improve on the position so that we can maximise the progress that we can make together.
“While the future of the UK undoubtedly lies within the EU, we need to be leading the way for an improved EU rather than threatening to leave it. I believe that the EU should take the lead in issues such as tackling exploitative work practices and should recognise the need to protect public services in any trade negotiations. We in the Labour Party want fair working conditions in Scotland, the UK and across Europe.”
You can read Ms McTaggart’s speech here