SHAAP briefing for the Scottish Government debate on the Internal Market (August 2020)

SHAAP briefing for the Scottish Government debate on the Internal Market (August 2020)

This briefing was prepared for MSPs in advance of the Scottish Government debate on the Internal Market, held on Tuesday 18 August 2020.

Key points:

  • The UK government’s proposed approach to the UK Internal Market is deeply concerning. Its apparently wide scope to the commitment to frictionless trade risks undermining the ability of devolved administrations to effectively implement important public health measures aimed at meeting the needs and protecting the health of local populations. 
  • The proposed justifications for derogations from the principles of non-discrimination and mutual recognition, such as in the case of “health emergencies”, are currently too high. They risk limiting unduly the powers that devolved administrations enjoy in a number of important and sensitive policy areas, including the protection of public health.
  • The proposed sweeping interpretation of the principles of non-discrimination and mutual recognition need to be reconsidered in light of a more careful assessment of the interplay between the commitment to the UK internal market and the need to preserve the integrity of the devolved powers, especially in areas where the needs of local populations differ significantly from the population of other parts of the UK, such as public health.
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Created Date: 19th Oct 2020
Last Updated: 19th Oct 2020